I’m sharing one of my favourite healthy comfort meals today, something that we love to have on a weekly basis when the weather gets chilly. There’s a hearty mixed root mash, a rich mushroom-based gravy, and steamed greens to balance it all out. Naturally gluten free, this recipe is also vegan and grain-free. Enjoy!

Twice today I declared that it was Friday when it’s actually Thursday, and that’s a pretty good description of my current mental fogginess. This month is always super busy for me at work, and there are a few big things wrapping up at the moment. Basically, I’m feeling drawn to restful times, coziness, and the people and activities that fill my heart up as a reaction to the pressures and stress-filled other stuff going on. That’s where healthy-leaning comfort food comes in for me, and I imagine you guys are looking for the warm and cozy meals too?

I’ve loved mashed potatoes since I was a kid (don’t all kids?) but over the last few years, I’ve started mixing it up with other root veggies. I don’t believe in demonizing foods, but I do like to make things a bit healthier when I can. When I first tried the combination of potatoes with parsnips and turnip, I felt like it was the perfect match. Potatoes mellow the sharpness of turnips and parsnips add a slight peppery bite. Starchy and still pure comfort, especially with this rich mushroom gravy on top. This mash and gravy were part of our Christmas dinner last year, but we also have this combo on the regular (with greens on the side, of course).

Sending warm wishes to everyone out there feeling some of that December pressure – remember that what’s really important at the end of the day is togetherness (I’m reminding myself of that too). Take a little time and make yourself something nourishing and cozy xx

Mixed Root Mash with Mushroom Gravy & Greens

Mixed Root Mash

  • 1 1/2 cups turnip, peeled and chopped into 1″ pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups parsnips, peeled and chopped into 1″ pieces
  • 3 cups potatoes (skin left on), chopped into 1″ pieces
  • 1 tsp salt (plus extra to salt the water for boiling)
  • water, to cover
  • 1 heaped tablespoon ghee or vegan butter

Add the chopped vegetables to a pot and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer and allow the vegetables to cook until they can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove from heat and drain the cooked vegetables. Return the veg to the pot, add additional salt, and ghee or vegan butter. Mash and set pot aside until ready to serve.

Mushroom Gravy

  • 3 cups (1 8 oz package/ 227 grams) cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • 2 tsp arrowroot starch
  • 3 tsp water
  • 1 cup stock or water

Heat a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add the mushrooms, salt, pepper and thyme and mix to combine. Allow the mushrooms to sit undisturbed for about a minute to brown. Stir, flipping the mushrooms over, and allow to brown on the other side. The mushrooms will release their water – continue to cook until most of that water cooks off.

Add the olive oil and toss to coat. Reduce the heat to medium and add the garlic. Saute 1-2 minutes, and then add tomato paste and stir. Add the red wine and allow the mixture to come to a simmer. Add the stock or water.

Make a slurry by combining the arrowroot starch and 3 teaspoons of water. Add this to the mushroom mix and allow to cook until thickened. Taste and adjust with extra salt or black pepper. Set aside.

Sauteed Greens

  • 1-2 cups of mixed greens per person (I like swiss chard, kale, mustard greens or spinach)
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the greens. Season lightly with salt and pepper and toss in the pan to coat with the olive and seasoning. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until greens are wilted and bright (swiss chard and spinach cook quickly, kale or coarser greens will take a bit longer). Serve immediately.

To serve, portion the root mash between dishes. Make a well in the potatoes, then add a ladle the mushroom gravy over top. Serve the sauteed greens beside the mash and gravy and enjoy!

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