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Parsnips

j
jmax Feb 26, 2008 07:39 AM

I am making a beef stew tonight. Last time I put parsnips in it - they had a woody or fibourus core. Did I not cook them long enough? Should I only buy a certian size? Cut the core out? What did I do wrong.

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  1. j
    janzy RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 08:17 AM

    Sounds like they wern't cooked long enough.
    I use them in boiled dinners and they take about the same time as turnips to cook.

    1. j
      Jason_Coulston RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 08:25 AM

      I would give them a longer cook and I'm sure they will soften completely. "Al-Dente" isn't something you really want with Parsnips. You can blanch or roast them first before adding them to your stew if you don't think they'll fully cook through in the braise. Personally, roasting with olive oil, salt, and pepper in a 375-degree oven is my method of choice.

      R. Jason Coulston

      1. h
        Harters RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 08:39 AM

        Just cut them into the same size chunks as your other veg. They'll be fine in a stew.

        When I cook them just as side veg, I tend to cut the core out.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Harters
          MMRuth RE: Harters Feb 26, 2008 09:11 AM

          I've started doing the same thing with removing the cores.

        2. JalamaMama RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 09:10 AM

          Lately- my supermarket has been offering smaller sized parsnips- mostly 4-5 inch size- I find them alot better than the large ones- I dislike the long skinny fat on one end ones. I do not like the woody/fiberous outcome either.

          Love to roast parsnips- french fry size for my family. Olive oil and salt and pepper. We have a gluten free family member- and they love these- and a 2 1/2 yr old is hard to please!!

          3 Replies
          1. re: JalamaMama
            Gio RE: JalamaMama Feb 26, 2008 09:16 AM

            Roasting parsnips brings out their sweetness, and taking out the core before cooking is the way to go. Like JM above, we use the simple dressing which is light and tasty. However for stew, I sometimes slice them as I would carrots, on the diagonal. The greater surface helps them to cook all the way through.

            1. re: JalamaMama
              LulusMom RE: JalamaMama Feb 26, 2008 10:13 AM

              Roasted parsnips are fantastic, and if you cook them long enough to get all soft and melty inside with a slight crunch on the outside, no need to take out the core. Just toss with some olive oil before roasting and finish with a nice salt.

              1. re: LulusMom
                h
                Harters RE: LulusMom Feb 26, 2008 10:56 AM

                And in a bit of cross-ocean assistance, drizzling them with a little maple syrup for the last few minutes of roasting is great - fantastic with roast chicken. Trust me.

            2. King of Northern Blvd RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 09:11 AM

              I always take the core out of the larger ones.

              1. s
                smartie RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 09:38 AM

                they might have been very old parsnips - I don't believe it had much to do with cooking time.

                1. m
                  missfunkysoul RE: jmax Feb 26, 2008 11:50 AM

                  My guess is that you used big, fat parsnips, no? The smaller the better... when they get too big, they send to get tough/woody. Even if you cook them to death, the texture just isn't as nice on the big ones.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: missfunkysoul
                    aussiewonder RE: missfunkysoul Feb 27, 2008 09:29 AM

                    I concur, i always avoid the large parsnips bc i learnt/heard? that the larger the parsnip the more woody and tough they get. I had a couple of extra large ones in the bag i bought this week and used those in my oxtail stew - they were fine and i didn't cut the core out either.
                    My fav way to make parsnips is to toss them w/ OOil, S&P, garlic and fresh thyme or rosemary and roast in a very hot oven. Ohhh...yum!

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