Food Focus: Root Vegetables
The roots of any plant are its anchor and foundation; they are the essential parts that support and nourish the plant. Root vegetables lend these properties to us when we eat them, making us feel physically and mentally grounded and rooted, increasing our stability, stamina and endurance. Roots are a rich source of nutritious complex carbohydrates, providing a steady source of necessary sugars to the body. Instead of upsetting blood sugar levels like refined sweet foods, they regulate them. Since they absorb, assimilate and supply plants with vital nutrients, roots likewise increase absorption and assimilation in our digestive tracts.
Long roots, like burdock, carrots, parsnips and daikon radish, are excellent blood purifiers and can help improve circulation in the body and increase mental clarity. Round roots, like turnips, radishes, beets and rutabagas, are nourishing to the stomach, spleen, pancreas and reproductive organs and can help regulate blood sugar and moods, and alleviate cravings.
1 sweet potato
1 butternut squash
3 TBSP raw unrefined coconut oil
salt and pepper
FRESH herbs (not the ones in jars): rosemary, thyme, sage. (Optional: add fresh basil or cilantro after they are done cooking and out of the oven)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Wash and chop all vegetables into 1/4 or 1/2 inch bite-sized pieces.
3. Place on large sheet pans or baking dish with sides.
4. Melt coconut oil over low heat (avoid microwaves at all cost!) and drizzle over cut veggies. Mix well to coat each vegetable.
5. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and herbs.
6. Bake uncovered for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender and golden brown, checking every 10 minutes to stir and make sure veggies are not sticking. If still not soft, turn oven off and leave veggies in warm oven until desired texture.
Note: Any combination of vegetables will work, but try experimenting with some even if they’re new to you. Roasting only one kind of vegetable also makes a nice side dish.