Oven roasted root vegetables with Indian spices

I don’t know about you, but when the temperature drops I crave more substantial savory foods like mac ‘n cheese, creamy soups and of course anything made with potatoes. Maybe it’s our bodies way of trying to fatten up for winter, which is something I don’t need, but I’m still having trouble resisting rich foods with lots of comforting carbs.

To satisfy this craving, how about a bake with lots of root vegetables and seasoned with savory Indian spices? It’s actually a very easy meal but requires a few spices that you might not have on hand, like dried chiles, and black mustard seed. You can get them at most Asian or Indian markets. I found both at Z Z’s Produce at 4092 Packard St. in Ann Arbor. They are a must for Indian cuisine.

A side note on black mustard seed: When I was first learning about this spice I looked it up on Wikipedia and, under “History”, it said this.

“The earliest reference to mustard is in India from the story of Buddha in the 5th century BCE. Gautama Buddha told the story of the grieving mother (Kisa Gotami) and the mustard seed. When a mother loses her only son, she takes his body to the Buddha to find a cure. The Buddha asks her to bring a handful of mustard seeds from a family that has never lost a child, husband, parent or friend. When the mother is unable to find such a house in her village, she realizes that death is common to all, and she cannot be selfish in her grief.”

Click HERE for the complete text on The Mustard Seed.

I just thought that was cool.

All of the other ingredients should be available regular grocery stores. You can use canola oil but ghee gives it a more authentic Indian flavor, and I highly recommend it. By the way, you can make your own ghee. Here is a link to learn more. We make our own from unsalted organic butter (when it goes on sale, of course).

As for the vegetables, it’s up to you. I like the combination of carrots, potatoes and onions but you can use whatever root vegetables like. Have fun with it. Use different colored potatoes or carrots as well as red and white onions.

Oven roasted root vegetables with Indian spices


  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ghee or canola oil
  • ~8 cups root vegetables (potatoes, carrots, onions, parsnips, rutabagas, and turnips)
  • 2 teaspoons black mustard seeds
  • 8 dried red chiles
  • 2 Tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2 jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1-2 cup vegetable broth (optional)


  1. If you are using potatoes or rutabagas in the bake, I recommend that you boil them first for about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  2. Cut your vegetables into 1-2 inch size chunks, keeping them relatively the same size. Put them in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  4. Heat ghee large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mustard seeds and chiles and cook 1 1/2 minutes or until seeds begin to pop. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add ginger, garlic, and jalapeño to the pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in the salt, turmeric, and Garam Masala; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add spice mixture to potatoes, tossing to coat. Arrange potato mixture in a single layer in a 13 x 9–inch baking dish.
  5. For an extra moist bake, add a cup or two of vegetable broth to the baking dish before putting it in the oven. This will also make a nice gravy or au jus that you can pour over the bake when it is finished
  6. Bake at 400°F for 40 minutes or until potatoes are tender and browned, stirring every 10 minutes.
  7. Stir in the cilantro, mint, and lime juice. Serve with basmati rice and/or raita.*


* Raita is Indian condiment made with yogurt and is traditionally, raita is seasoned with cilantro, ground cumin, mint and red chili powder but can also can include vegetables like cucumber and tomato. It is used as an “antidote” to spicy food, to cut the heat.

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5 Responses to Oven roasted root vegetables with Indian spices

  1. Looks delish! And that store you mentioned is right by my house. Thanks-

    • Anne at #

      Liza, I love that store, they have always seem to have what I’m looking for!

  2. So raita is right for me then because my vegetarian palate can’t stand too much heat. Thanks for the tip!
    The photos of the colorful root vegetable are very appetizing. What a great way to introduce kids to healthy veggies.

    • Anne at #


      It’s not actually that hot. The dried peppers add more flavor than heat, in my opinion, and just limit the amount of jalapenos.
      I giggled when you said “my vegetarian palate can’t stand too much heat” because my husband and I are both vegetarians and we can’t get enough heat! We grow more hot peppers than anything else.

      I hope you try this and let me know how it was.


  3. Hey! I made this and took it to a pot luck. Needless to say, it was gone in like 10 minutes! The flavors blend amazingly and the spice-infused ghee just went straight into the veggies, it was pure bliss. I used half as much mint as was called for (b/c mine is quite strong). Superb all ’round, will definitely make again very soon. PS I was savvy and held a bit back for myself, yay.

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