Tag Archive | "rutabagas"

Apple-Rutabaga Soup Offers a Taste of “Liquid Autumn”

One of the tastiest, most satisfying birthday gifts I’ve ever received was a dinner at the Inn at Little Washington, deep in the rolling hills of Virginia. The restaurant has long been considered one of the finest in the country, and its plush decor is only a prelude to the opulent flavors that lie in store from chef Patrick O’Connell’s kitchen.

One treat we sampled was this Apple-Rutabaga Soup. I admit I was never a big rutabaga fan; but softened and sweetened by the addition of apple, sweet potato and butternut squash, it came into its own, as an essential element in a sublime soup, the recipe of which is included “Patrick’s O’Connell”s Refined American Cuisine: The Inn at Little Washington” (Bulfinch Press, $45).

One taste and you’ll realize why O’Connell calls it “liquid autumn.”

I loved the tiniest hint of cayenne pepper. If you have a greater heat tolerance, you may want to up the amount slightly or pass the cayenne around with each bowl to give it a sprinkle of red on top.

Plus, you can make this recipe vegetarian by using vegetable stock instead of chicken.

Apple-Rutabaga Soup

1/4 pound (1 stick) butter
1 cup roughly chopped onion
1 cup peeled, cored and roughly chopped Granny Smith apple
1 cup peeled and roughly chopped rutabaga
1 cup peeled, seeded and roughly chopped butternut squash
1 cup peeled and roughly chopped carrots
1 cup peeled and roughly chopped sweet potato
1 quart chicken stock or vegetable stock
2 cups heavy cream
¼ cup maple syrup
Salt, to taste
Cayenne pepper, to taste

In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onion, apple, rutabaga, squash, carrots and sweet potato, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent.

Add the stock and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until all of the vegetables are cooked through and tender.

Purée the vegetables in a blender or food processor. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into the same pot you used to cook the vegetables. Add the cream, maple syrup, salt and cayenne pepper.

Return the pot to the stove, bring the soup to a simmer, and serve.

Makes 2 quarts or 6-8 servings.

From “Patrick O’Connell’s Refined American Cuisine: The Inn at Little Washington”

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Welcome Cool Weather With Roasted Winter Vegetables

RoastedVeggiesRoasted vegetables are delicious any time of year, but especially when it feels comfortable enough to turn on the oven — and leave it on for more than an hour.

To those who make a face at the word “rutabagas,”  I invite you to give this vegetable another chance. It has an earthy but mellow, slightly sweet flavor when baked or boiled.  Add melted butter and crumbled bacon to mashed rutabagas and you have a dish my family always welcomed at the Christmas dinner table.

Fennel bulb adds a gentle flavor of anise to the blend, with garlic and onion offering more substantial tastes to counter the blander flavors of the potatoes.

With some good whole-grain bread and butter, and maybe a wedge of cheddar to slice, this could be the centerpiece of a meat-free meal.

Roasted Winter Vegetables

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound rutabagas, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 pound onions, cut into 1-inch wedges or slices about ½-inch thick
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 pound fennel bulb, trimmed and cut into slices about ½-inch thick or narrower
1 pound sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
1 pound potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes, OR use cleaned fingerling potatoes, cut into the same size
8 cloves peeled garlic
1/2 tablespoon crumbled, dried sage
1/2 tablespoon crumbled, dried rosemary
1/2 tablespoon crumbled, dried oregano
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place very large roasting pan in oven and heat for 15 minutes (or 2 large roasting pans – vegetables should be in single layer).

Remove from oven. Add olive oil to pan. Add vegetables and garlic and gently stir them around in the oil. Put in the oven. After about 45 minutes, add herbs, salt and pepper, to taste, and stir gently around in pan. Take from the oven when the vegetables are tender, after about 1 ¼ hours. Drizzle over lemon juice, sprinkle with fresh parsley, stir vegetables gently and serve.

Makes 8-10 servings.

Adapted from

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