The cold winter months are a great time to bring more root veggies into your food routine. You may notice your body naturally starts to crave more squash, carrots and potatoes during these months. It’s important to fuel your body with warm cooked foods when living in a cold climate. Don’t try to power through winter eating salads everyday. You body and especially your digestive system won’t appreciate the raw veggies in the winter and you may notice digestive symptoms like gas, bloating, or increased bowel movements start to happen as a result.
Sweet potatoes are a great root vegetable to add into your winter food rotation. They are a good source of fiber, rich in vitamin A and are also a source of vitamin C, vitamin B6 and potassium. The nutrient content we find in sweet potatoes helps to keep our blood sugars balanced – important for everyone of us; they are a source of antioxidants which help protect our tissues from damage; and they support a healthy immune system – keeping us well through the germ ridden months of the winter.
Here’s one of my favourite recipes that uses sweet potato. I usually have this as a side dish, but I have been known to cook up a batch at have it as my whole meals as well. This recipe also contains a green leafy vegetable, which is one of our most nutritious food groups that most people struggle to do adequate amounts of. I hope you enjoy this awesome flavour combination as much as I do!
Brussels Sprouts and Sweet Potato Medley
2 Tbsp butter
2 tsp olive oil or melted coconut oil
12 Brussels sprouts, washed and cut in half lengthwise
1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
2 cloves garlic, chopped (I usually add more – garlic is great!)
5 sprigs of thyme (or 1 tsp dried thyme leaves)
2 red apples, cubed
1/4 cup parsley, chopped (or 2 Tbsp dried parsley)
2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400F.
In a bowl, combine butter and oil with Brussels sprouts, cubed sweet potato, garlic and thyme.
Spread mixture onto a baking sheet, with the cut sides of the sprouts facing down.
Cook for 30 minutes at 400F, or until sprouts and sweet potatoes are easily pierced with a knife.
In a small bowl, mix together all dressing ingredients.
Toss dressing with all ingredients together in a bowl.
Written by Dr. Jennifer Kaster ND