Hasselback Root Veggies

I’m constantly looking for new and different way to serve vegetables to my children, especially because we interact with so many families who still consume the Standard American Diet. These rich foods, which typically contain high levels of unhealthy fats, added sugars, and refined grains, can throw off our natural ph and send us in downward spiral of weight gain, stress and fatigue.

I challenge you to start the year off by ditching all the packaged and processed foods in your pantry. We’re all guilty of eating processed “healthy food;” the reality is that just because you find it in the organic section of your grocery store doesn’t mean it’s healthy. These organic packaged foods are still disguised with excess sodium, sugar, and fat. It’s important to read the label carefully because these hidden food additives can affect your nervous system, resulting in moodiness, fatigue, anxiety and even depression.

Instead of packaged food, opt for more fruits and vegetables that come straight from the ground; eating plant-based foods allows your body to naturally shift from glucose to fat as it’s primary fuel source, thus leaving you feeling satisfied after eating a healthy meal…and not hungry an hour later as we often are after eating processed foods. The food choices that you make on a regular basis affect not only your waistline, but how you think, act, and feel. The more intentional you are when you shop, the faster you’ll adjust to a healthy lifestyle, in mind, body, and spirit.

When I looked in one of my mom’s old cookbooks and found a recipe for hassle back potatoes I was intrigued. Although potatoes are a familiar favorite in our household, the potatoes looked so different and beautiful when they were sliced like this, why not try it with a few often overlooked (and ohh so healthy) root vegetables? Root vegetables such as carrots and parsnips are naturally sweet, and potatoes and turnips have a hearty, earthy flavor. I added butternut squash to this recipe too in order to keep it on the sweet side for the kids. Not only are these veggies high in fiber and beneficial for disease prevention, but including them in your diet at this time of year can bolster your natural immunity from colds. The best part about eating vegetables is that you can eat as much as you want without feeling guilty. What is your favorite way to serve root vegetables to your kids? Tweet to me, @KateMurrayVogue

2 Russet Potatoes (washed but not peeled)
1 Turnip
1-2 Parsnips (depending on size)
1 Sweet Potato or Butternut Squash
4 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
1-2 Cloves of Garlic (minced)
Salt and pepper

Slice the vegetables but not all the way through. Bake at 400 degrees for one hour, then brush with olive oil again and continue baking for another 15-30 minutes. The longer you bake, the crisper they get on the outside.

Garnish with fresh rosemary.

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