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Parsnips - what do do with them?

So, I have got a bag of parsnips in my CSA package this week. I cooked them once before for Thanksgiving - pureed, and I was NOT impressed. Just did not care for that strange flavour.

What else can I make with these? I need to use them up somehow...

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  1. i cook them in chicken soup or vegetable soup, or roast them whole with olive oil and sald and then eat it with fresh tomatoes

    7 Replies
    1. re: ahuva

      Do you add small chunks to soup?

      1. re: Allenkii

        I make chicken soup and dice up parsnips, carrots and celery in it. The parsnips are such a fragrant root veg, I love the aroma and flavor they add.

      2. re: ahuva

        I also like to add them to most soups and stews.

        Also, you can roast them with a bunch of other root vegetables and turn that into a roasted vegetable soup by pureeing the veg with some stock and cream or half and half. I add in a bit of nutmeg or mace. Good vegetables for this are celery root, rutabaga, parsnips, and carrots. The celery root seems to make it as do the parsnips.

        1. re: Leepa

          I love them roasted with beets and carrots, garlic, rosemary and olive oil...nom!

          1. re: Val

            Second this!

            Or roasted with carrots and olive oil, salt, and cumin.

          2. re: Leepa

            During the holidays, CH's turned me onto roasted parsnips and let me tell you-I was sold. I had no idea what I was missing. Super delicious.

          3. re: ahuva

            they are an important part of chicken soup with the other root vegetables
            parsley root
            celeriac(celery root)

          4. If you want to get really creative, you can pickle them! with carrots and chiles. very tasty!

            1 Reply
            1. re: foodieop

              Thank you but after non stop summer canning, I am all canned out till next end of summer lol

            2. Boil with equal part potatoes and maked mashed parsnip/potatoes. Maybe the potato will lessen their assertive flavor for you.
              But if you did not care for "that strange flavor" the first time, you may not care for parsnips in any form. Personally, I love them, but they do have a very distinct flavor.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ttoommyy

                Absolutely, yes. I never make mashed potatoes that aren't cut with at least three other roots. Parsnips, carrots, sweet potatoes, you name it. Far more interesting than Russets.

              2. Peel and slice into French fry sticks. Toss with olive oil, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese and bake till crispy. Sprinkle with parsley.

                If they're large, cut out the cores

                1. My favorite is roasted -- with or without other root vegetables, just tossed in olive oil and dusted with a little S&P.

                  In England you can buy them sliced thin and fried crisp, like potato chips. I **adore** these.

                  16 Replies
                  1. re: sunshine842

                    Those chips are addicting. I ate them constantly when we visited London. I've seem them in NYC...Tyrel or tyrek is the brand

                    1. re: cheesecake17

                      Tyrell's (2 L's) -- wish we could get them affordably and/or easily here.

                      1. re: sunshine842

                        I knew I was close! They're not cheap-$3 for a single serving

                        1. re: sunshine842

                          There is a "brand" of parsnips? I thought they were a vegetable. You can thin slice and fry at home..much better than a branded chip.

                          1. re: Springhaze2

                            Of course there are brands of parsnips -- the ones sold whole in my supermarket have brand names on the package (as does the celery, carrots, lettuce, and tomatoes) --

                            and the Tyrell's chips are particularly good.

                            I don't deepfry anything at home and eat very little fried food anywhere else -- so I have, and will continue to have zero guilt about thoroughly enjoying parsnip chips when I'm in the UK.

                            1. re: sunshine842

                              Sorry, my post did come across right. I was confused about what Tyrell's were. Now I see that they are a packaged chip.

                              I don't think of brands when it comes to buying vegetables. I buy from farm markets.

                              1. re: Springhaze2

                                I live in a subtropical climate -- there isn't a farm-grown parsnip within a day's drive of me. (but my neighbor gives me coconuts, so it all balances out)

                                1. re: Springhaze2

                                  I should give up trying to post when using my tablet. That second post was supposed to say that my first post did NOT come across right.

                                  sunshine, there certainly are many advantages to living in a subtropical climate! I'd love to have a neighbor that gives me coconuts!

                                  Thanks for the info on Tyrell's, Harters. Will look for them when I visit the British shop that is in a town about an hour from here.

                            2. re: sunshine842

                              Tyrell's make a wide range of potato crisps (as we call them) as well as the range of vegetable crisps. The bags of mixed parsnip, carrot and beetroot are a great snack.

                              https://www.tyrrellscrisps.co.uk/crisps

                              1. re: Harters

                                I was in Aldi today (twice in two days!) and they have a new item in their new Simply Nature line - vegetable chips. Sweet potato, tarro, batata (what is that?), and parsnip are what is listed.

                                1. re: Leepa

                                  Batata IS sweet potato, so must be two varieties in the chips.

                                  1. re: greygarious

                                    Thanks. I meant to look that up and got sidetracked.

                                    1. re: greygarious

                                      I thought a batata was a white starchier sweet potato. A Dominican friend bought some for me once

                                    2. re: Leepa

                                      Oh exciting...we live in a very rural area, but happen to have an Aldi store. I need to check these out!! Thanks for posting.

                            3. Slice into 1/2 inch thick. Toss with olive oil, fresh chopped thyme, salt & pepper. Roast on parchment paper lined baking-sheet at 350F for 20-min or until fork-tender but firm. Serve as is or drizzle a balsamic vinegar.
                              Roasting brings out the sweetness in parsnips

                              Have another baking-sheet with sweet potatoes - same cut & seasoning.

                              I serve these 2 vegs with my Tksgiving or Christmas turkeys. They can be roasted ahead and warmed up in the oven closer to serving time.

                              1. Try roasting them with carrots, onions and garlic. Cut the carrots and parsnips into sticks about 1/2 inch wide and maybe 1 1/2 inches long. Dice some onion and garlic, sprinkle on some olive oil, fresh thyme, salt and pepper ...stick in the oven at about 400 for 20 minutes, stirring a few times while roasting. See if your opinion of parsnips changes. (you want them to turn brown/caramelize a bit while roasting).

                                Great addition to any roasted root/winter vegetable combination, like roasted red potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, parsnips, onions and garlic with some olive oil and herbs.

                                I don't think I'd do just a straight pureed parsnip, but roasted garlic/parsnip mashed potatoes are really yummy.

                                Parsnips are one of those must have things that I always have in the house. I always use them in making broth and soups. Add them to stews and other braised dishes.

                                Pretty much anything where you use carrots, you can also add parsnips. About 1/2 carrots to 1/2 parsnips.

                                I use them when making pasties, but most people don't even know what pasties are.

                                1. Love this recipe from right here!

                                  http://www.chow.com/recipes/30122-par...

                                  I also like to do a root vegetable mash including potato, carrots, parsnips, turnips and celery root.

                                  1. Latkes.

                                    Fry them in duck fat.

                                    Yum.

                                    Serve with some sour cream horseradish sauce.

                                    Double yum.

                                    You're welcome.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                      (of course shoes fried in duck fat would be tasty....)

                                        1. re: ipsedixit

                                          Actually thin yellow flip-flops fried in duck fat are quite good. {8>)

                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                        A variation on Ipse's suggestion: a 50-50 mix of grated carrots and parsnips make a very tasty latke. Include some grated Parmesan cheese in the mixture.

                                      2. I went and looked in the fridge and I definitely have enough to try few of suggested recipes.
                                        I will:
                                        Add one to a chicken soup on Thursday
                                        Use 2 with a cauliflower puree (possibly tomorrow served with pork shoulder roast)
                                        Roast the rest with other vegetables

                                        Thank you for suggestions. I had no idea I could use it in soups. I have to confess - it was in my previous two deliveries as well...i ground it up and mixed with meat for my pup...

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Allenkii

                                          They add a nice sweetness to chicken noodle soup

                                        2. Combine with other veg and roast, cut up in pieces that will assure they are done at more or less the same time: carrots, turnips, potatoes, celery. Use some sprigs of herbs among them while roasting; thyme would be my choice; in another thread someone just recommended rosemary for this use.

                                          Roasted veg are handy not only as sides on their own, but can become parts of a salad, or a topping for pasta, or ingredients of a frittata or quiche or pot pie or...

                                          1. Other posters have sung the praises of roasted parsnips, so I won't repeat that good advice. Another lovely side, especially with roast lamb, is simply buttered parsnips and carrots. Cut them into 1/2" dice, put in a large sauce pan covered with water. Bring to a boil, then simmer until tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and toss with butter and salt & pepper. For six servings you'll need 6 parsnips and 4 carrots. The combination of carrots and parsnips is terrific in this recipe.

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: janniecooks

                                              I always steam my sliced parsnips rather than boiling. The same with carrots. And broccoli. And brussels sprouts. And... well, just about any veggie. I think it's healthier to steam veggies than to boil them, and they taste just fine. I put them all in one pot, and they cook very nicely together. And as an alternative to tossing with butter, I generally toss with EVOO and a bit of cider vinegar or lemon juice (and salt and pepper). Yummy!

                                              1. re: Cilantra

                                                I don't know..whoever says steamed and boiled vegeatables are good should try roasted or grilled vegetables in olive oil with lots of sea salt.

                                                1. re: Monica

                                                  Since the majority of posts that preceded my post were touting roasted parsnips, it wouldn't really add anything to the conversation to echo those posts. Seemed well covered when I replied; these boards are filled with replies that say the same thing over and over again, why add to that.

                                                  Simmering is a perfectly legitimate and delicious way to enjoy vegetables. Tossed in butter, cooked properly and not overcooked, they can be sublime. Perhaps the pure flavor of veg and butter is too subtle for some jaded palates to enjoy. Simmering is just one of many techniques in the arsenal of a skilled cook.

                                            2. Soup! Fry off some onions, add some curry spices, parsnips and stock - cook, whizz up, serve with spoon of creme fraiche.

                                              1. +1 for curried parsnip soup. The curry works well with the sweetness and kinda masks the 'strange flavour'. I love roast parsnip, but I don't really care for it just chucked in soup with other veggies - it has got to be curried parsnip, or curried parsnip and pear soup - sounds strange but is really good!!

                                                1. Roasted yes, but they are also good simmered in orange juice with fresh ginger. Simmer until tender, reduce whatever is left of the orange juice, then add a knob of butter for a yummy sauce. Parsnips are one of my favorite vegetables

                                                  1. Roasted has already been mentioned many times. They are indispensable in beef stew, and are also great in curries. My favorite might be coarsely mashed, either by themselves or with some rutabaga, with a touch of truffle butter or garlic butter. However, it may be that the OP just doesn't care for the basic parsnip flavor. (I can relate to that...I hate the taste of carrot..so I use parsnips.)

                                                    1. Use them in soups, roast them with carrots and onions, make a parsnip and potato puree.

                                                      1. People always refer to the sweetness of parsnips and carrots. I have rarely found parsnips to be sweet - although I don't often have them - and as often as not, find that carrots have that same sharpness that parsnips can have. It is my understanding that the cores of these vegetables are the sharp-tasting, pungent parts and that those with cracks should be avoided because they are older and have woody cores.

                                                        I suggest roasting. I would not put parsnips in soup unless I'd cooked them separately, tasted them, and liked them. Going for a tongue-twister here: Putting a pungent parsnip in a pot of potato soup potentially "poisons" the potage. ;-) If you have a nice, sweet parsnip, go ahead and add it. One of the best sides I've ever had was a butter-laden parsnip puree. I learned that parsnips are the sweetest if they overwinter in the ground, so spring is their best season.

                                                        I happened to buy a bag this week and today am including them in the America's Test Kitchen one (sheet) pan chicken dinner. Chicken breasts, legs, thighs brushed with herbed butter, on a sheet pan with oiled root vegetables cut into 1" chunks, at 475F for 35-40 min. Put the breasts at the center of the pan so they get a little less heat than the rest. They used carrot, shallot, potato, and Brussels sprouts. I'm using carrot, shallot, sweet potato, yuca, and parsnip.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: greygarious

                                                          I think that sharp flavor comes from staying in the ground too long and sprouting in the spring. The best parsnips are dug just as soon as the ground thaws in the spring.

                                                        2. They are good in a beef stew with other root vegetables.

                                                          1. One of our most regularly used winter vegetables.

                                                            I like them roasted - you can drizzle with honey to emphasise the inherent sweetness. We also grate them, with other root veg and then steam.

                                                            But hey, if you didnt like the natural flavour, why bother trying again.

                                                            4 Replies
                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                              By the by, a recent restaurant dessert was parsnip cake - just think of the more common carrot cake. Like carrot cake, it was moist with the parsnip lending more of a background sweetness, than a pronounced flavour. I liked it - not hugely, but enough that I'd order it again.

                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                interesting -- did it have that slightly-peppery flavor?

                                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                                  Not to my tastebuds - it was just sweet.

                                                                2. re: Harters

                                                                  I once made a "white carrot cake" with parsnips.

                                                              2. definitely roast them and that "strange" flavor will become irresistible.
                                                                Pureed sounds unappealing to me so I'm sure you'll like them cooked differently if you give it another shot.

                                                                1. If they're big, they can be baked, just like potatoes. That's one of my favourite methods with big parsnips - they come out particularly fluffy.

                                                                  If the flavour is difficult, try pairing with fennel - I find this to be a very nice combination.

                                                                  1. I like to make a roasted parsnip, sweet potato, and white bean soup. The sweet potato tempers the parsnip flavor and the beans make it nice and creamy.

                                                                    Cut up a roughly equal amount of parsnips and sweet potatoes (or 2/3 sweet potato and 1/3 parsnip), toss with olive oil and roast in the oven until tender. Saute a diced onion (or not) in a little olive oil, add the roasted veggies and some chicken or vegetable stock, add some herbes de Provence (or just thyme), simmer for a bit, add a can or two of cannellini beans (drained) and puree with a stick blender. Add salt & pepper to taste and additional stock or water to get it the consistency that you want.

                                                                    You can skip the roasting step and just simmer the vegetables in the stock but I like the extra flavor from the caramelized bits.

                                                                    1. You can make parsnip salad, grated with raisins. It is very good this way. You can also grate and add to a cake. I roast mine and usually put some coarse salt on them and oil.

                                                                      1. Shred an equal number of parsnips and carrots, and then saute in butter. (Original recipe and proportions from "Cooking for Mr. Latte" by Amanda Hesser, http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/1832... )

                                                                        I also put them in Guinness beef stew, again, in equal proportions to the carrots.

                                                                        1. http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

                                                                          Once of my favorite recipes. You can get created with the herbs.

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: melpy

                                                                            Just made this tonight. Tasted great, but for some reason, my carrots and parsnips never cooked through. I prefer roasted root veg to be soft on the inside.

                                                                            Ended up eating some and then putting them back in the oven. They roasted well over an hour and still are toothsome. ???

                                                                            Anyway, thanks for the idea; I have a gigantic bag of parsnips to use up.

                                                                            1. re: nothingswrong

                                                                              Are they large? The core on the large ones can be quite tough.

                                                                              1. re: Leepa

                                                                                Yes, they are quite large at the top.

                                                                                I will admit to being a parsnip neophyte. I actually don't think I've ever prepped them at home.

                                                                                I'll try "coring" them a bit tonight and see what happens. Thanks for the tip.

                                                                              2. re: nothingswrong

                                                                                Last Christmas, I made some roasted parsnips in a parchment paper bag and forgot about them. They came out like home fries and they were delicious, so said the guests and they do not usually eat parsnips. I have had good success this way as opposed to them roasting on a tray.

                                                                            2. Try this parsnip Hummus recipe from Ana Sortun. It's amazing.

                                                                              http://www.cookstr.com/recipes/creamy...

                                                                              1. I love parsnips in all their glory but my kids do not. However if I peel them, then continue peeling the whole veg and deep fry them everyone loves them. They get dehydrated by the frying so will keep for a few days. I love them on salads.

                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                1. re: DowntownJosie

                                                                                  What do they taste like deep-fried?

                                                                                  I try to avoid frying things, but have a ton of them in the fridge right now.

                                                                                  1. re: nothingswrong

                                                                                    They are delicate and really crispy. You don't need a big pot of oil, I cook them in a smallish pot and cook them in small batches. I would suggest you try them, they are quick and easy to make.

                                                                                    1. re: DowntownJosie

                                                                                      I will try and do them later on tonight. Thanks for the idea! If I do, I'll post back.

                                                                                2. I take parsnips, carrots, and sweet potatoes and make baked chips for my kids. Super easy to make and I usually end up eating most of them!

                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: TracyKaplan

                                                                                    Hi TracyKaplan, please tell me your technique for baked parsnip, carrot and sweet potato chips. I've had no success with baking veggie chips. They either stick to the pan or come out greasy

                                                                                    1. re: MrsPatmore

                                                                                      I found it best to slice them pretty thin - if I'm making a big batch I'll use the attachment on the food processor. Then I spray the baking sheet with cooking spray and do small batches in a single layer. I also always put them on paper towels to soak up any remaining moisture while they cool. I used to use olive oil but found that with thin slices and just 10-12 minutes of cooking time, it made them too greasy.

                                                                                      1. re: TracyKaplan

                                                                                        I just happen to have 5 lbs of parsnips in the fridge, so I'll give it another try. Maybe I'll try parchment paper and cooking spray. Using cooking spray alone on my sheet pan made them stick to the pan (I guess due to the relatively high sugar content?) and if I added more oil, as you mentioned, they became greasy. What temp do you use, Tracy? Convection or no?

                                                                                        1. re: MrsPatmore

                                                                                          I like the way convection roasts or bakes potatoes, so I think it would work well on parsnips. When I roast veggies, I usually use my convection toaster oven, and they brown and caramelize nicely.

                                                                                          1. re: MrsPatmore

                                                                                            Just a regular oven at 400 degrees. It does work best to pre-heat the baking sheets in the oven for a few minutes before you put the slices on them. I haven't used parchment paper but would be curious to know if that works.

                                                                                            1. re: TracyKaplan

                                                                                              I use parchment paper cooking envelopes. They are a great convenience. I have prepared parsnips cut into rounds, some oil and coarse salt and put them in the pouch. They were cooked, browned a bit and they went fast. I also prepare parsnips and carrots, onions at the bottom of a casserole dish and put chicken breasts, bone in, skin on over the mix and bake all together, it works quite well..

                                                                                    2. I make this all the time..everyone's favorite..and people can't get enough of this dish. So good.

                                                                                      http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Monica

                                                                                        That sounds right up my alley.

                                                                                        Can anyone tell me how long parsnips will last in the fridge, and how you know when they're starting to turn? Do they get soft/mushy, or limp like carrots do?

                                                                                        1. re: nothingswrong

                                                                                          they store just like carrots -- they'll last weeks, even months, in the fridge.

                                                                                          When they get dehydrated, they'll get spongy, like carrots --- those end up in soup.

                                                                                      2. Parsnips feature in tongiht's dinner, where blanched chunks will get fried along with chestnuts, black pudding and apple. They'll go on top of salad leaves and, in turn, be topped by slices of roast belly pork. Dressing of extra vurgin rapeseed oil, wine vinegar, mustard & honey. Crusty bread alongside.

                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                          that sounds wonderful (can I skip the black pudding?)

                                                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                            'Fraid not, mon ami. I'm northern - black pud is an absolute requirement - they're hard wired into the genes.

                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                              you can have mine, then.
                                                                                              (I've eaten black pud in Ireland, Scotland, several cities in the UK, France, and Germany....I've earned the right to give it a pass....)

                                                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                Fair enough.

                                                                                                I will usually happily devour any sort of sausage but I draw my line in the sand at andouillete de Cambrai. Vile beyond belief!

                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                  yeah....anything for which quality is judged by how much it smells like sh*t isn't on my list of must-eats.

                                                                                                  I *have* tried it, several times, from a variety of producers who have earned Medailles d'Or in various contests, thinking it might be like strong cheeses -- if you can get it past your nose, it's sublime. But no.

                                                                                                  I can absolutely respect the tradition, and I can absolutely respect the art it takes to roll it into precise concentric circles.

                                                                                                  But it still smells like sh*t and I refuse to eat it.

                                                                                            2. re: sunshine842

                                                                                              Do you know they serve baked beans and black pudding together in Ireland. My niece recently posted a picture of her little one eating the combination.

                                                                                              1. re: Ruthie789

                                                                                                Certainly one of my favourite Sunday breakfasts, Ruthie. Beans on toast topped with fried black pudding.

                                                                                                Whilst I'd always champion the Bury black pudding, I'd have to agree that the ones made in the Irish town of Clonakilty are very good. As is the white pudding made there (we don't really do white pudding in England, although you do see it in Scotland)

                                                                                          2. Roasted with honey and wholegrain mustard

                                                                                            1. Tonight I made roasted parsnips with chopped bacon and balsamic vinegar. Super easy. Cut the parsnips into sticks, dice up a few slices of bacon, add some black pepper to taste and roast at 400 degrees for about a half hour. I finished it off by tossing it with a dash of aged balsamic vinegar.