Roasted Spring Vegetable Salad

Roasting is such a magical way to prepare vegetables. Many people who tell me that they hate cruciferous vegetables (some of the most pungently smelling vegetables, I will admit) are completely conformed when they try roasted cauliflower for the first time. Roasting Brussels sprouts turns them into sweet, caramelized bites that are amazing hot or cold – no joke! You can roast almost any vegetable, but typically roasting is associated with fall and winter vegetables. While I don’t often advocate for cranking up the oven during the warmer months (and it’s already in the high 80’s here!), it’s worth it to try this salad. Hope you’ll give it a try!

Turnips and Radishes

This is pre-roasting and you can see how tiny the turnips are next to the radishes!

First thing to do is get some baby root vegetables like turnips, beets, and/or radishes. In my case, I didn’t have any beets, but got some adorable baby turnips with their greens still attached and half a bag of radishes. The turnips needed trimming (save the greens for adding to salad, making pesto, or a quick sautée) and scrubbing. Then, I halved or quartered the turnips and radishes and tossed both with a bit of EVOO and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Roast those up in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes or until beginning to brown and shrink a little (that concentrates the sweetness and creates caramelization).

Meanwhile, I assembled some greens in a large bowl – spinach and arugula (but you could also use those turnip greens!) and made the salad dressing. I make salad dressing all the time, but rarely use a recipe. Here’s a quick vinaigrette that you can alter to your taste: 1 part balsamic or white wine vinegar + 2 parts extra virgin olive oil + 1 garlic clove minced + 1 tsp dijon mustard + pinch each of salt and pepper. Add fresh herbs like thyme, basil, or parsley to make this even better!

Chicken Veg Salad

Adding chicken to this roasted root vegetable salad makes it a filling and delicious meal.

Finally, assemble the salad and toss with the dressing. I always recommend dressing lightly – you can add more at the table if you need it, but you can’t take it off once it’s added!

What do you think? Have you tried roasting radishes? Mixing fresh, roasted and grilled veg for your salads? I’d love to hear your ideas!

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