Cook with Parsnips – the healthy, but forgotten root vegetable
It’s that time of year, when root vegetables like parsnips rule. But maybe you’ve never thought of parsnips or have never cooked with them before. It’s time to give them a try.
Parsnips are a cousin of the carrot and are a fantastic root vegetable full of nutrients and vitamins.
It is a great source of fiber and vitamin C, providing more than 1/3 of your daily needed dose. It also has iron, magnesium and vitamin B-6. Just because it’s a white vegetable doesn’t mean it’s not full of amazing flavor. I think parsnips show their true color when roasted.
This recipe combines the sweetness of parsnips, caramelized leeks, earthy mushrooms and a kick of red pepper.
The leek is a powerful anti-inflammatory food that also contains vitamin A and K. This low-fat vegetarian dinner is easy and satisfying.
While attending the International Food Bloggers Conference, I discovered Oxbow Organic Farm, located in the Snoqualmie Valley. This 25-acre vegetable garden near Carnation sells its produce at farmers markets, restaurants and to weekly subscribers. At the Ballard Farmers Market, I recently picked up a box of vegetables from Oxbow and their parsnips and leeks inspired this recipe.
Hot in the Kitchen: Roasted Parsnips with Leeks and Mushrooms
6 parsnips (medium size)
½ of leek diced
1 cup chopped mushrooms (save time by buying pre-sliced mushrooms)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Peal parsnips and cut into one inch by two inch pieces. Clean leek by slicing it lengthwise from about ½ inch away the root through to the green ends. Rinse the leek under running water to remove dirt. Pat dry and dice ½ leek. Mix parsnips, leek, mushrooms, olive oil, salt, hot pepper flakes and black pepper in bowl. Cover large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Pour vegetables onto sheet and spread out as thin as possible. Cook in oven for a total of 22 minutes, stirring and turning vegetables at 11 minutes. Optional: sprinkle a pinch of applewood smoked sea salt on top of dish.
My mom introduced me to parsnips last year during the holidays and I was hooked! Definitely an underused veggie.
I never had parsnips as a child and discovered them at farmers markets as an adult. Thanks for the feedback Ani. Parsnips – the other white vegetable.