Living in the Chicago area has awaked my interests to the world of food. Not just food I’m used to, but all foods from all nationalities and ethnicities. I love the diversity that is here! Now, I am interested in those “other” items in the store, whereas I probably hardly noticed them, and in many places they probably weren’t available. Before you assume I’ve gone and found some extremely *unheard of* vegetable, think again, you have heard of both of these, but I’ve never cooked with them until recently. Parsnips and Butternut Squash. I fell in love, head over heels, with Butternut squash in the last recipe I used it in. I eye it temptingly as I pass it by in the aisles.
Today when I was in the store, I passed by a whole aisle of root vegetables. The turnips looked great, so did the parsnips. I looked across the way and eyed some butternut squash that also looked very lovely. I will do something with the turnips another day, but I so enjoyed using the Parsnips and Butternut squash in this recipe.
I originally was going to use white onions in this dish, but lacked the right amount, and had enough purple onion, and realized how much more beautiful it would look with that instead. Tom loved this dish. He couldn’t quit raving about the quick little sauce I put together for it.
I was not expecting to like this dish as much as I did. I thought it would be good… but I wasn’t anticipating the explosion of flavors and the warm embrace of the butternut squash, potatoe, parsnip, and onion mixture. A beautiful combination I would recommend for the winter especially.
- 6 or 7 large Russet potatoes
- 4 large parsnips
- 1 large butternut squash
- 1 large purple onion
- 6 venison steaks (can be subsituted with beef steaks)
- Olive Oil
- Celery Stalk
- Cayenne Pepper
Preheat over to 450 degrees F. Wash and chop Russet potatoes, leaving skin on. Peel and chop the butternut squash, onion, and parsnips, making sure to leave in large chunks. Toss with a generous amount of olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, and oregano. Add more salt than seems necessary, as the vegetables and potatoes will all soak it up. Place into the oven for 20 minutes covered in foil, check for partial doneness. If at least half way cooked, uncover until cooked thoroughly. If not, recover and cook for 10 minutes more. Using a flat spatula, gently turn the mixture, letting each piece have a chance to brown and crisp slightly. When dish is cooked through, potatoes are soft, remove, add chopped parsley. Set aside.
Pat dry venison steaks or beef steaks. Pierce with a fork multiple times, and massage in your favorite spice for either meat. (I used “Chicago Steak” from Weber Grilling Options. I would recommend anything with a high pepper content to highlight the venison.) In a heated frying pan, sear venison steaks, watching carefully to not let meat overcook.
In food processor, add a handful of parsley, celery stalk, 1/3 cup of Olive Oil, 1/3 raw parsnip, sliced, Cayenne pepper and Italian seasoning. Blend, adding salt and pepper to taste. Use to accompany the meat. Enjoy!