EDITOR’S NOTE: California has forever spearheaded the American organic food movement. While traditional boutique eateries are making syrup-laden delicacies, in Santa Monica they’re roasting roots. And that’s far from a bad thing: chef Zoe Nathan kills it. Educated at San Francisco’s Tartine, bld in LA and NYC’s Lupa, the well-cultured chef now works with husband and business partner Josh Loeb at their restaurant and artisan café: Rustic Canyon and Huckleberry Café & Bakery. Her recently released cookbook, Huckleberry: Stories, Secrets, and Recipes from Our Kitchen, dishes secrets to making fantastic organic morning meals. The Roasted Root Vegetables with Eggs features beets, carrots, turnips and a sunny-side-up egg for good measure. — Tucker Bowe
I thought I didn’t like turnips, and neither did Laurel, until we made this. So if you think you don’t like turnips, put them in anyway. Roasted like this, they’re actually really good. On the other hand, I tested this with rutabaga, and it is not good at all. The flavor is just too strong.
Roasting the beets the day before makes a lot of sense. It’s a long process, so you might want to roast a bunch and save some for a salad or to eat with fresh burrata or on the Smashed Avocado Toast with Hard-Boiled Eggs and Anchovy Dressing (page 234), thinly sliced, instead of the eggs. Serves 2
2 or 3 small beets, plus 3 cups/110 g beet greens, washed and chopped
4 tbsp/60 ml extra virgin olive oil
1 apple, unpeeled, sliced into eighths
2 small turnips
2 cups sliced carrots,
cut into 1/2-in/12-mm coins
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary 1 garlic clove
1 tbsp capers in brine, drained and coarsely chopped
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley 1 to 2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 to 4 eggs
Fleur de sel for sprinkling
Preparing Roasted Root Vegetables with Eggs
1. Preheat your oven to 425°F/220°C. 2. Put the beets, 1 tbsp of the olive oil, and 1/8 tsp salt on a sheet of aluminum foil and wrap thoroughly. Roast for about 1 hour and 30 minutes. 3. Meanwhile, toss the apple, turnips, and carrots with 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp salt, and the rosemary. Place on a sheet and roast beside the beets until browned, 15 to 20 minutes longer, and the beets are fork-tender. While warm, but not hot, rub the skin off the beets with a paper towel or clean kitchen towel. Slice the beets. 4. When everything is roasted, heat the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil and the garlic in a large sauté pan over medium-high until browned and fragrant. Discard the garlic. Add the beet greens and capers and sauté until wilted. Add the roasted vegetables and sauté until heated through. Taste for salt and adjust as needed. Remove from the heat, toss with the mustard and parsley, and set aside. 5. When it comes to frying the eggs, you may need to either work in batches or have two pans going at once. Heat 1 tbsp of the butter in a nonstick sauté pan over high heat. Crack 2 eggs into a small bowl and gently slide them into the butter. (If you break a yolk, discard the egg and try again.) Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the whites are set but the yolks are runny, about 2 minutes. When ready, give the pan a gentle shake to loosen the eggs. 6. Meanwhile,mound the roasted vegetables on to two plates. Slide the eggs onto the vegetables, and sprinkle with fleur de sel. Repeat with any remaining butter and eggs.
The roasted vegetable mixture keeps well, refrigerated, for up to 2 days.