Sunchokes - root vegetable

Roasted Sunchokes with Garlic and Thyme [Recipe]

The humble yet slightly exotic sunchoke. In home kitchens and restaurants alike, it’s one of the most underutilized and underappreciated root vegetables anywhere in the world. Part of its mystique comes from some confusion about the name. Oftentimes you’ll hear sunchokes referred to as “Jerusalem artichokes” but they’re not actually artichokes, they are in fact the tuberous root of the sunflower plant.

Sunchokes have a rich, nutty, earthy and slightly sweet flavor. They almost taste like a cross between a chestnut and a parsnip. They have a lovely creamy texture when cooked, resembling the inside of a roasted fingerling potato.

Sunchokes are incredibly versatile, they can be eaten raw in a refreshing salad, shaved thin and fried into light and crunchy chips, blended into velvety purees and soups or roasted until caramelized and tender.

Sunchokes are a very healthy vegetable as they’re high in potassium, iron and fiber. Although they’re available year-round, the prime season for sunchokes is between October and April, making them an excellent choice for the coming fall and winter months ahead.


Sunchokes: Shopping, Storing and Preparing

Shopping

Sunchokes are a mid-sized, knobby vegetable, greatly resembling the appearance of ginger.

When shopping for sunchokes, try to avoid ones that have any soft spots and look for smooth ones with minimal knobs and blemishes as they’ll be easier to slice and cook uniformly.

Storing

They can be stored in the fridge for up to two weeks. Wrap them in paper towels to absorb the humidity and keep them in the vegetable crisper for optimal results.

Preparing

Sunchokes can be a bit dirty and gritty, so be sure to scrub them thoroughly with a vegetable brush and rinse them before starting to cut them.

Sunchokes do not need to be peeled but keep in mind that, like apples, they’ll oxidize and turn brown quickly after they’re cut so be sure to have some water with lemon to put your sunchokes in right after you cut them.


About this Roasted Sunchokes Recipe

Rating: 4/5Serves: 4 ServingsDifficulty: EasyApprox. Cost: $15.00
Prep Time: 20 MinutesCook Time: 25 MinutesTotal Time: 45 Minutes

This is a quick and easy recipe for simple yet delicious roasted sunchokes. In this preparation, they’re roasted in olive oil with garlic, thyme, lemon zest and crushed red pepper, creating a healthy and delicious vegetable side dish that would pair wonderfully with grilled steak, roast chicken, pasta or as a snack on their own, enjoy!


Ingredients

  • 1 pound (450 grams) sunchokes
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic, skin-on, crushed
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF (220ºC).
  2. Scrub the sunchokes thoroughly under cold running water making sure to remove any dirt.
  3. Slice sunchokes into ½ inch thick (1¼ cm) slices and place into some cold water with the juice of half a lemon.
  4. Remove sunchokes from the water. Toss the sliced sunchokes and the remaining ingredients into a bowl.
  5. Spread the sunchokes evenly onto a sheet pan and roast for 20-25 minutes, flipping them halfway through and roast them until they’re golden brown and tender. Remove the sprigs of thyme and crushed garlic. Serve immediately.

Image: Foodista

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