While we wait for the sun to change its course and for spring greens and foraged foods to grace our plates, Berkshire chefs are adding panache to the root vegetable collection we know and love. Versatile and nutritious, the bounty of root vegetables available in the Berkshires allows diners to enjoy eating in season — with a bit of commitment and creativity. After many months of roasted, sautéed and puréed beets, carrots and potatoes, winter salads are a welcome alternative.
Two committed farm-to-table restaurants in our region are digging up their roots and putting the spotlight on sweet parsnips and black radishes, two under-appreciated tubers in the culinary world, sharing delicious recipes for the at-home cook.
The Meat Market, a locally sourced, nose-to-tail butcher shop and lunch café located in Great Barrington, buys directly from farmers within a 100-mile radius. The following Roasted Parsnip Salad recipe is crafted in-house and presents crunchy, tart, sweet and savory, a perfect blend of flavors to add interest to the remaining days of winter.
Nudel Restaurant in Lenox sources as many local ingredients as possible, regardless of the time of year. Seasonally inspired, their Caesar salad interpretations are well loved by guests during the long winter months. This recipe, featuring black radishes, purple potatoes and lentils, is a hearty, full-bodied and out-of-the-ordinary winter salad well worth the effort.