Cooking parsnips

I’ve never grown parsnips successfully, so I just let them go to seed for the bees. I share the seed with my neighbour and he brings me parsnips from his garden.

Recently he brought me some with apologies for them being a bit on the small side. They had thick cores and long skinny roots :


I love mashed parsnips and because we’d just had a cool change after a couple of days of oppressive heat and I was sick of salads, I decided on hot veggies for dinner.

Normally, I’d cut off the skinniest part of the root, peel what was left then cut into sections, discarding the tough core. With these, it was obvious there wasn’t going to be much left if I did that. So I used my veggie peeler to slice off long strips until I reached the core and was able to use most of the root. I cooked the peelings in a casserole in the microwave and then mashed them with butter and S&P :


(If you always do your mashed parsnips this way, don’t write and tell me. I want to believe I’ve been fantastically clever for just a little bit longer!).


16 Responses to “Cooking parsnips”

  1. notsomethingelse Says:

    Just sharing the fact that I have had an intense dislike of parsnips since being made to eat them in childhood. Maybe I should test whether my tastes have changed at all over time.

    By the way, you are so clever 🙂


    • fergie51 Says:

      I think it’s like a lot of ‘stuff’ that was served to young ones. Unless done well you never acquire respect for it. I was the same with asparagus as I’d only ever had canned. Give it a go, done well of course!


  2. fergie51 Says:

    I absolutely love parsnip! My favourite is mashed carrot and parsnip takes me back to the dinner table of when I was young. Love it baked, fried, mashed and I think I made a parsnip mousse years ago that was a real hit. Mmmm. might have to dig in the brain for how I did that!


    • foodnstuff Says:

      I think baked is the best of all. Never tried it fried, though. Must give that a go. Mousse…? I’d like to see that! 😉


  3. Bek Says:

    Very clever. I’ve often struggled with woody parsnips, but I like your strategy to only get the tender bits. I have to say though I often do parsnip half half with potato in the thermomix. Best way to get a super smooth mash.


  4. narf77 Says:

    I adore parsnips but alas, I can’t grow them here either. I think it is quite fortuitous that your blog comes just before a most creative vegan blog that I also follow in my RSS Feed Reader. They too are creative with parsnips. They shred theirs and make a breakfast ‘hash’ but it looks amazing and I reckon you might like it.

    I will now grow parsnips for the bees on your suggestion 🙂


  5. Frogdancer Says:

    Remember when you gave me parsnip seeds? They’re still going… they just keep reseeding in the same wicking bed. I air-fried a parsnip I harvested on the weekend and made parsnip “chips”.


  6. brymnsons Says:

    I mainly use parsnips in soups and stews, never thought to mash them. Might give them a go when the weather stops being so ferocious 🙂


  7. kmfinigan Says:

    Parsnips have never been something Ive grown regularly – but it looks like I might have to try!


    • foodnstuff Says:

      My neighbour says the secret is deep, friable soil, so the initial root (which becomes the main edible root) can get down without any effort or interruptions (stones, clods), and NO fertiliser,which apparently makes the roots fork, too. He says the same goes for carrots.


      • kmfinigan Says:

        I usually sow my carrots in a half half mix of
        sand and soil (because I live in a clay-heavy area) so I presume that parsnips would work similarly! Thanks for the tips 🙂


  8. pruefreefood Says:

    oh you have 2 try roast parsnip soup, just roast as normal wid some whole garlic cloves n red or brown onions then blitz it all in a blender n season you wont be sorry you tried this mmmmmm 🙂


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