Roasted Vegetables with Maple-Balsamic Dressing

You can use any combination or amount of the vegetables below or experiment with your own favourites.  Try serving this side dish with BBQ’d or baked sausages or fish, cole-slaw or a green salad, and a cranberry relish or other condiment.  Serve warm as a side dish or at room temperature as a salad.

The beets take the longest to cook, so if you are short on time give them a head-start in the microwave and finish them in the oven.  Try to use large cookie sheets and avoid over-crowding the vegetables, so they roast and brown more quickly.

About 8 servings

• 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
• 2 large parsnips, peeled and cut into ¾ inch pieces
• 2 carrots, scrubbed or peeled and cut into 3/4 chunks
• 3 beets, scrubbed or peeled and cut into ¾ inch chunks
• 1 red onion, chopped into 1 inch chunks
• 2 red peppers, chopped into 1 inch chunks
• 1 cup Brussels sprouts, trimmed
• 1 lb mushrooms, quartered
• ½ cup olive oil
• 1 tsp salt
• 1 tsp pepper
• 1 Tbsp garlic, minced

This makes almost 2 cups of dressing which provides extra for other salads.

• 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
• 3 Tbsp maple syrup
• 2 Tbsp grainy Dijon mustard
• 1 tsp salt
• 1 tsp black pepper
• 2/3 – 1 cup olive or canola oil (depending on your taste)
• 1 cup fresh basil, chopped, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Wash and prepare all vegetables.  Place parsnips, carrots and sweet potatoes in one bowl, beets in their own bowl, and remaining vegetables in another bowl.

Whisk together oil, salt, pepper and garlic.  Divide oil mixture among the 3 bowls and toss to coat.

Put the parsnips, carrots, sweet potatoes and beets on one parchment lined baking sheet, leaving a gap between the beets and other vegetables.  Put the rest of the vegetables on another parchment lined baking sheet.

Roast for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  When the onions are softened, remove the onion mixture from the oven and set aside to cool.  Continue to cook the remaining vegetables until they are tender and a little crisp (another 20-25 minutes), then remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Combine all the dressing ingredients, except the basil.  When the vegetables have cooled slightly, add dressing to taste.  Toss well to coat.  Garnish with the fresh basil.

Adapted from Whitewater Cooks at Home

How about changing up your BBQ condiments?

At Reesor’s in Stouffville we have a great selection of chutneys, relishes, ketchups, and mustards to add some extra zip to your BBQ’ed meats, fish dishes, curries or anything that you want to liven up. Our favourites are Sweet Onion Balsamic Chutney made by Round the Bend Preserves; Lasting Heat Peppercorn Mustard prepared by the Savvy Chef, and Ketchup made by Country Flavour (maybe you’ll say goodbye to Mr. Heinz).