The time of year has come when parsnips are readily available and they’ll get us through to the new year! Apparently after the first frost they taste even better but they are tasting pretty damn good to me already! They are by far my favourite root vegetable and I could happily eat them everyday (especially if they are roasted with Parmesan or honey and mustard… too good). So I thought I’d share two parsnip based dishes that I have made so far 🙂

Honey and Lemon Parsnip cake

There truly is nothing better to bake in a cake than parsnips. Think of it as a carrot cake that just got sweeter, moister and just generally more exciting! Parsnips give cakes an awesome subtle yet complex flavour and you can really play with it too: parsnips love honey, and orange and lemon and maple syrup and cinnamon and nutmeg just for starters!

The following recipe is based on this one which is incredible, I came around to making my version when I substituted the original’s maple syrup with honey because it is more affordable and then I tweaked the flavours to match.

It appears as quite a modest cake; it looks quite plain and the icing/filling is simple but the taste and texture are just so good and in my opinion it will blow a boring old sponge or carrot cake out the water. Also unlike in the pictures I’d recommend making this cake in 2 20cm cake tins, definitely best results that way!

Mini Honey and Lemon Parsnip Cakes

175g butter , plus extra for greasing
250g demerara sugar
100ml runny honey
3 large eggs
275g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp mixed spice
250g parsnips , peeled and grated
1 medium eating apple, peeled, cored and grated
zest and juice 1 1/2 lemons

– Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.

– Grease 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line the bases with baking parchment.

– Melt butter, sugar and honey in a pan over gentle heat, then cool slightly.

– Whisk the eggs into this mixture, then stir in the flour, baking powder and mixed spice, followed by the grated parsnip, apple, lemon zest and juice.

– Divide between the tins, then bake for 25-30 mins until the tops spring back when pressed lightly.

For the filling I used greek yoghurt and mixed with honey to taste, or in the original mascarpone is used.

Roasted parsnip soup

This one was inspired after reading about roast carrot soup on this lovely blog;I could imagine how nice the carrots would taste after roasting imagining how the flaovour and sweetness would intensify. So I did a similar thing here with parsnips and the verdict is: you will love this soup if you love parsnips! It really tasted so much stronger than parsnip soups I’d cooked before where you boil them all in water, this was much richer and basically tasted like roast parsnips which is exactly how I want parsnip soup to taste! The lemon juice and fresh coriander cuts through the sweetness a little which lifts it nicely.

This was a ‘use whats in the fridge’ kind of meal so measurements are a bit vague but you get the gist….

Roasted Parsnip Soup

Serves 2-3

olive oil
1 tsp each turmeric, cumin seeds, mustard seeds
4/5 parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
5 cherry toms, halved
2 onions, chopped into large chunks
2 garlic cloves
juice of half a lemon
handful fresh coriander, chopped
1.5l veg or chicken stock

-Put parsnips, tomatoes onions and garlic in a baking tray and add a generous glug of olive oil.

-Add the spices and mix thoroughly.

-Put into an oven preheated to 220c and roast until tender (around 25mins) but not  too crispy.

-Transfer into a food processor or blender (took me about 3 lots) with the coriander and stock added, pouring into a saucepan once smooth.

-Heat in the saucepan and season to taste- add more stock or water if it needs thinning.

-Just before serving squeeze in the juice of half a lemon and stir. Garnish with fresh coriander.

Enjoy parsnips this season!!



4 thoughts on “Love for Parsnips

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