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Parsnips are the underachievers of the vegetable world. They take all season in the soil, waiting for the first frost to turn sweet. As you can probably tell by the family resemblance, parsnips are related to carrots, but pack more punch. They tend to turn sweeter when they are cooked, but they can be eaten raw. They are very high in potassium and fiber.   

QUICK IDEAS: chop and boil with potatoes before mashing. roast in the oven with other roots; shave into a salad

Parsnip or Celeriac Oven Fries: serves 4
From Farm-Fresh and Fast

1 lb parsnips and/or celeriac
3 tbsp olive oil
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
1-2 tsp other seasonings as desired (minced garlic, chili powder, dried herbs)

1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2) Trim the ends of the parsnips or peel the celeriac and cut into uniform wedges. Place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil, tossing to coat each piece. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and mix in the other seasonings you've chosen.
3) Spread the vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 45-60 minutes, turning over each piece after 20-30 minutes. When finished, the edges of the fries should be starting to brown.

Parsnip Biscuits: makes 10-12
from food 52

2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup puréed parsnips (just simmer small chunks of parsnip until quite tender, then purée in food processor or with immersion blender...reserve some of the water to add back to puree so it is the right consistency)
5 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup cold yogurt or buttermilk, plus more as needed 

1) Heat your oven to 425F. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the flour, salt, baking powder, and black pepper until combined. 
2) Using your fingers or a pastry cutter, blend in the cold butter until there's a combination of coarse crumbs and pea-sized chunks. 
3) In another bowl, whisk together the parsnip puree, honey, and buttermilk until well blended. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and dump the wet ingredients into it (you'll probably have to use a rubber scraper to get all the honey out of the mixing bowl, it likes to stick), and stir just until you have a shaggy dough. If the mixture seems too dry, add a little more buttermilk one spoonful at a time until the mixture comes together in a sticky, shaggy dough. 
4) Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and pat it out into a 1-inch thick (or so) square. Cut the square in half, place one half on top of the other and pat it back down to 1-inch thick. Cut in half and stack again, pat it back down. Cut in half and stack one more time and pat it down to a 3/4 or 1-inch thick rectangle. 
5) Cut the rectangle into 10 square biscuits.  
6) Transfer biscuits to a baking sheet. Bake the biscuits until they're golden brown and puffed, about 13-15 minutes. Take out of the oven and transfer to a wire cooling rack immediately. 

Parsnip Puree with Sauteed Brussels Sprouts: Serves 4 
from Gourmet Magazine, 2008

1 1/2 lbs parsnips, peeled, quartered lengthwise, and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/3 to 1/2 stick of butter, cut into pieces
3/4 Cups Whole Milk
5 oz Brussels Sprouts
3/4 Tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons water

1) Cook parsnips in a 5 to 6 quart pot of boiling water with 1/2 tablespoon salt covered, until very tender, 15 to 20 minutes, then drain
2) Puree hot parsnips with butter, milk and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a food processor until smooth. Season with salt, then transfer to a serving dish and keep warm, covered.
3) Meanwhile, remove and reserve all but smallest leaves of brussels sprouts, trimming stem ends as necessary.
4) Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat until it shimmers, then cook leaves, tossing occasionally, until browned in patches, 2 to 3 minutes.
5) Add water and cook tossing until leaves are slightly wilted and water has evaporated, 1 to 2 minute. Season with salt and scatter leaves over parsnip puree.

Parsnip and White Bean Soup
from Yummy Beet

1lb parsnips (about 4), cut into 1-inch pieces
1 onion, cut into rough pieces
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 tbsp dried whole or fresh rosemary
1 tbsp sea salt
Ground pepper, to taste
1, 15 oz can white beans, drained and rinsed 
    OR 2 cups cooked white beans
6 cups vegetable stock 
    (or a combination of vegetable stock, water, or chicken stock)
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1) Preheat oven to 400ºF. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss garlic, parsnips, onion, oil, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes, until garlic and parsnips are tender and turning golden.
2) Once cool enough to handle, squeeze garlic from skins into a blender, along with roasted vegetables, beans, water or broth, and lemon juice (this may need to be done in 2 batches); purée until smooth, adding more water or broth if too thick (depends on dryness of parsnips). Or, add ingredients to a large pot and purée with an immersion blender.
3) Transfer blended soup to a large pot. Heat over medium, stirring frequently so bottom doesn't scorch. Serve hot with croutons on top and drizzle of olive oil.
​**(Make your own croutons by toasting good bread in the broiler with olive oil. Let it sit and cool before cutting them up)

Roasted Vegetable Salad: Serves 4 
from Recipes from the Root Cellar
*When roasting it is important to cut the root vegetables in the same size for even cooking. Use 1/2 inch as a guide.

1 large Beet, peeled and diced
2 Carrots, diced
1 Parsnip, diced 
1 Turnip, diced
1 whole garlic head, cloves separated and peeled
2 tablespoons olive oil
4-6 Cups THINLY sliced mixed tender winter greens (cabbage, kale)
Maple-Soy vinaigrette or Molasses-Mustard Vinaigrette (recipes to follow) 
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Maple Soy Vinaigrette
 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
 2 tablespoons maple syrup (Use the real stuff!!)
 2 tablespoons soy sauce
 2 garlic cloves, minced
 1 (1/2 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
 Whisk together first ingredients, then drizzle in oil while whisking. Stores up to 1 week.

Molasses-Mustard Vinaigrette
 1/2 cup dark molasses
 1/3 cup dijon mustard
 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
 2 tablespoons olive oil
 Whisk all ingredients together. Stores up to 1 week.

1) Preheat oven to 450. Lightly oil a half sheet pan or large shallow roasting pan.
2) Combine the carrots, parsnip, turnip, and garlic in large bowl. Add the olive oil and toss well. Transfer to the pan and arrange in a single layer.
3) Put Beets in that same bowl and toss in remaining oil (add more if needed). Transfer to the pan and arrange in single layer. (I do the beets separate because they may bleed on the other veggies)
4) Roast the vegetable for 35 to 40 minutes, shaking pan occasionally for even cooking, until they are tender and lightly browned (this is key!).
5) Just before serving, toss the greens with about 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette in a large salad bowl. Add the roasted vegetables and another 1/4 cup of the dressing and toss again. Season with salt and pepper. Serve at once, passing the remaining vinaigrette at the table. 

Winter Root Slaw: Serves 5

1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup sherry (red wine vinegar) 
1/2 cup chopped parsley (loosely packed) 
2/3 cup olive oil
2 carrots  
2 parsnips
1 celery root
2 black radish (or 1/2 daikon radish) 

1) Put the mustard, salt, sugar, vinegar and parsley in a blender and process until combined, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the blender, cover and process at its slowest setting. Drizzle in the olive oil slowly. When it is all in, move the blender to its highest setting and puree for about 90 seconds.
2) Peel all the vegetables except for the radishes, if you are using black ones. The slivers of black in the salad look cool, so I leave them in. Using a vegetable peeler or a coarse grater, slice shreds off the vegetables into a bowl. Try to keep the shreds roughly the same length if you can.
3) To finish, toss some of the vinaigrette with the shredded vegetables and let stand in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving. 

Winter Root Vegetable Soup: Serves 5

3 parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 celery root, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 turnips, quartered
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 (2 pound) butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 tablespoons butter
1 stalk celery, diced
1/2 sweet onion, diced
1 quart vegetable broth or water
1/2 cup half-and-half cream
salt and ground black pepper to taste

1) Preheat an oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). 

2) Combine parsnips, carrots, celery root, turnips, sweet potato, and butternut squash in a large roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil, and season with 1 teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Toss vegetables to evenly distribute seasonings. 

3) Roast in the preheated oven until the vegetables are easily pierced with a fork, 30 to 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. 

4) Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Stir in the celery and onion; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Pour in the vegetable broth (or water) and bring to a simmer, uncovered. Stir in the roasted vegetables and continue simmering for 10 minutes. Puree the soup using an immersion blender. Stir in the half and half, and season with salt and pepper, if necessary. If the soup becomes too thick, add more vegetable broth. 

Fried Parsnips with Sour Cream and Green Onions: Serves 2
From Bon Appetit December 2010

3 Tablespoon olive oil, divided
2 large parsnips (or 8 to 9 oz equivalent), scrubbed and sliced on a slight diagonal into 1/8 inch thick rounds
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 Tablespoons thinly sliced green onions or leeks
Sour cream

1) Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium heat.
2) Arrange 1/2 the parsnips in a single layer in the skillet.
3) Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until the bottoms are golden, 3 to 4 minutes.
4) Turn parsnips over and sprinkle salt and pepper again. Cook until tender and slightly crisp, about 2 to 3 minutes.
5) Transfer to plate; mound in the center to keep in heat.
6) Repeat with the rest of the parsnips. 
7) Top with parsley, green onions or leeks, and sour cream.

Parsnip Muffins: Makes 12 muffins
From The Whole Seed Catalogue 2014

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 medium parsnip, finely grated (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup applesauce
1 egg
1/2 cup toasted almonds, chopped
1 teaspoon grated orange zest

1) Preheat oven to 400. Sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in medium bowl.
2) Combine parsnips, coconut milk, oil, and applesauce; fold in pecans and orange zest.
3) Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and combine until moistened.
4) Grease muffin tin and spoon about 1/3 cup batter in each of 12 tins. Bake until toothpick inserted comes out clean, 25-30 minutes.