Cauliflowers, leeks, kale and other winter veg are in short supply after heavy rainfall in late autumn ended the British growing season ahead of schedule. Meanwhile, snow and frost in Italy is hampering European imports of fresh produce, especially leafy vegetables like herbs, spinach and chard, combining with a tough British growing season to create some short-term shortages.
Luckily, we still have classic British root vegetables to fall back on, like carrots, potatoes, beetroot and parsnips, which were harvested before Christmas and stored to see us through the winter.
Far from boring, root veg can make some of the best winter meals, providing much needed warmth, carbohydrate and comfort.
Here are 5 recipes to make the most of organic roots:
Parsnip, Cauliflower & Chickpea Korma
This mild, warming spicy curry transforms parsnips into a creamy, comforting cold-weather dinner in less than half an hour. The Indian flavours of ginger, coconut and fresh coriander work beautifully with parsnips.
Freeform Homity Pies
A humble, classic British pie filled with potatoes, leeks and onion. Our recipe is for freeform pies using puff pastry. We think any messy edges and unevenness adds to the charm. Serve with any salad or greens of choice.
Aromatic Beetroot Curry
Healthy and sustaining, this jewel-coloured, mild curry is packed with aromatic spices, and cooled with coconut and yoghurt. If you want to prevent your hands from staining when you’re preparing the beetroot, wear a pair of rubber gloves, although it does wash off, eventually!
Roasted Beetroot, Carrot & Lentil Salad
Cooked lentils are useful for throwing together a quick salad. This one would also work with other root veg, such as parsnips or celeriac.
Guy’s Kale Hash
This is a real treat on a cold day. You can use any kale, or cabbage or sliced Brussels sprouts in place of kale if you wish. To make a more complete supper, top with a poached egg.