The spice blend in this dish makes it pleasantly hot and delicious. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, place the spices inside a resealable, heavy plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin.

Makes 8 servings
Cooking time: N/A


2 medium (½ lb./250 g) russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into large pieces

1 large (½ lb./250 g) sweet potato, peeled and cut into large pieces

1 large (½ lb./250 g) parsnip,  peeled and cut into large pieces

1 large (½ lb./250 g) turnip,  peeled and cut into large pieces

2 tbsp (30 mL) canola oil

2 tbsp (30 mL) coriander seeds

4 dried red chiles (like chile de arbol), stems discarded

¼ cup (60 mL) finely chopped fresh cilantro

½ tsp (2 mL) coarse kosher or sea salt


  1. In large saucepan filled halfway with water, add potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips and turnip. Bring water to boil and then lower heat to medium and cook, partially covered, until vegetables are very tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain vegetables. Transfer them to medium bowl and coarsely mash. Cover mashed vegetables to keep warm.
  2. While vegetables cook, in small skillet, heat canola oil over medium-high heat. Add coriander and chiles and stir-fry until coriander seeds are reddish brown and chiles are blackened, about 1 minute. Turn off heat. Using slotted spoon, transfer chiles and coriander to mortar. Reserve spiced oil. Grind chilies and coriander with pestle, scraping spice blend into centre with spatula until it has consistency of finely ground black pepper.
  3. Once vegetables are smashed, add reserved spiced oil into vegetables along with ground spice blend, cilantro and salt. Stir well to combine and serve warm.


Serving size
½ cup (125 mL)

Recipe courtesy of, featured in the Canadian Diabetes Association’s 2015 Healthy Living Calendar. To download the latest recipes, visit

Nutritional Information

Per Serving
Calories 90
Total Fat 4 g
Saturated Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 210 mg
Carbohydrates 15 g
Fibre 4 g
Sugars 3 g
Protein 2 g
Potassium 158 mg
Root vegetables, such as sweet potato, carrot, onions and beets, are rich in vitamins, and fibre, which has many benefits for people with diabetes. An easy way to serve them? Roast them in the oven with a drizzle of oil. – Michelle Corcoran, registered dietitian, Waterville, N.B.

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