Adapted from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone
2 1/2 lb mixed root vegetables — potatoes, carrots, turnips, parsnips, beets, sweet potatoes, small onions, or whole shallots (or celeriac, sunchokes, delicata squash, leeks, radish)
1 head garlic separated into cloves but unpeeled
Several short rosemary sprigs or sage leaves
3 bay leaves
Salt and freshly milled pepper
Preheat the oven to 450F. Peel the vegetables, onions, and shallots. Cut everything into pieces roughly the same size except for the parsnips, sweet potatoes, and turnips, which cook faster and can be slightly larger than the rest. Toss the vegetables, garlic, and herbs with oil to coat lightly, then season with salt and pepper.
Put everything in a roomy pan. Bake, uncovered, in the top 1/3 of the oven for 20 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice. Reduce the heat to 375F and continue baking until the vegetables are tender when pierced with a knife, twenty to thirty minutes, depending on how large they are. Remove the bay leaves.