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It actually snowing in New York; I almost don’t believe it. Last year was unseasonably warm, and while it was nice not having to avoid patches of ice or carry an umbrella to protect yourself from the snow, it’s just plain weird to not have winter feel like winter. You simple expect snow. I know that I said last week that I really wanted a little bit, and that’s exactly what we’ve been getting. Just a few flurries, a little sprinkle, just a touch of snow – it’s been perfect! It’s not so much that you don’t want to go outside, but just enough so that you get to see it when you wake up. It started with just a little on Friday, when Kramer and I met up with our friends Joel and JK for dinner at Allswell. We warmed up there with beef cheeks, fried Brussels sprouts (duh), lamb meatballs, and pork pate – yum, indeed. All washed down with an old fashioned or two, of course. Saturday was spent cleaning out our closets, a chore that we both needed to desperately complete, but like most chores, had been putting off for months. It feels good to look at our clothes and see that they have a little room to breathe, plus there is a clothing donation bin near our apartment, so nothing went to waste…except for a few leftover, holey high school t-shirts; it was time for those to go. We rewarded our no-so-hard work by meeting up with Morgan and Pat for oysters at The Bedford, following by board games and beers at Spritzenhaus.
Sunday was, of course, the Superbowl! Obviously I’m not a big sports fan, but I do enjoy sporting events. You get to yell, drink beer, eat junk food, and just hang out – what’s not to like? After watching a few more episodes of Chronologically Lost, Kramer and I headed over to The Warsaw to watch the game on three giant big-screen TVs, drink beer, and eat wings and nachos with Rachel, Matt, Adam, Hannah, and Morgan. The venue was enormous and I was a little unsure about it at first, but it ended up being absolutely awesome. I’m all about the mob mentality of football games, so being in a big beer hall with a ton of people cheering for their favorite team was a lot of fun. Beyonce wasn’t half bad, either. I definitely freaked out when Destiny’s Child popped up, and I think even the bros we were surrounded by did, too. It was quite the show! Matt is from Maryland, so we all rooted for the Ravens along with him. It was such a close game there at the end that it made their victory even more exciting.
Getting back to the snow, though: this is the kind of thing that I like to make for dinner on a chilly day after getting home from work. It takes about an hour from start to finish, maybe even less if you are a quick worker (which I am not), but most of that time is spent letting the vegetables roast in the oven. That means that you can get it all together, pop it in, and then go take a quick shower or, if you’re like me, tidy up because you spend every morning in a hectic rush to get of the house, throwing clothes and shoes and whatever else that lies in your path around the room. I obviously love Brussels sprouts, but parsnips are another winter favorite of mine. They’re like a sweet, slightly nutty potato, even though they look like a carrot. Like Brussels sprouts, they’re best this time of year, so you can always find some in my fridge when the weather is bitterly cold. This is the perfect dish to warm you up, and you can eat it as a side, with a fried egg on top, or even tossed in some pasta with a little grated Parmesan on top. The mustard and honey dressing is simple, but it feels bright and helps the root vegetables pop, alongside the caramelized shallots, of course. Weeknight meals from scratch are a total possibility! If you’re doubtful, then give this a whirl and it’ll prove that it’s worth the extra effort.
Cook until the sprouts and parsnips are nicely browned, then add in the shallots again. Toss in your combined Dijon mustard, honey, grapeseed (or olive) oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. You can add in a dash or two of red pepper flakes, too, if you like. Bake at 400 degrees F for 25-30 minutes, until the parsnips and sprouts are fork tender.
Serve alongside almost any main course, or toss in pasta or rice for a full meal all on its own.
- 2 large parsnips, peeled and cubed
- 2 cups Brussels sprouts, cleaned and halved
- 1 large shallot or ½ an onion, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided, for cooking
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons grainy Dijon or country mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey or agave
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or grapeseed oil
- juice of ½ a lemon
- pinch red pepper flakes
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Peel and cube your parsnips and clean and halve your Brussels sprouts, then set aside. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan (I prefer cast iron) and add in your sliced shallot or onion. Saute for 5 minutes or so over medium-high heat, until just translucent, then remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add in another 1 or 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add in your parsnips and sprouts and sprinkle with ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper. Cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, until they are both somewhat browned (but definitely not nearly cooked through). Whisk together your mustard, honey, oil, lemon juice, and a pinch of red pepper flakes, add the shallots back to the pan, and toss everything together. Place the whole pan in the oven and roast for 25-30 minutes, until the parsnips and Brussels sprouts are fork tender. Taste and add any additional salt, pepper, or honey, and serve. This makes a great side dish or eat it with pasta or rice! We ate this alongside a bowl of soup.