Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Parsnips and Prejudice

I am a very prejudiced woman. For most of my life, I have dismissed an entire category of vegetables, mostly without ever having tasted them. Root vegetables. Even by my own criteria, it makes no sense that I would have automatically shunned almost all of them. After all, some of my best friends are vegetables that grew under the ground! I have always loved potatoes, sweet potatoes and carrots.... but not so much beets and radishes. Still, it seems strange that instead of thinking, "I love carrots! There must be other root vegetables that are just as nifty!" I instead decided, "I'm not much a fan of radishes, so vegetables that grow under the ground must be the root of all evil." Sadly, that pun WAS intended. Forgive me.

For dinner, I made Citrus-Marinated Tofu with Onions and Peppers. Since that was a safe meal (with an extremely delicious sauce, I must say!), I decided that I would also roll out the parsnips. I thought these Baked Parsnip Fries With Rosemary sounded like they could be palatable. Of course, since we are talking about me here, I also threw a half a pound of green beans in, to roast with them. (See previous post, regarding my second rule on how to live my life.) 

My verdict: I like parsnips! And I am ashamed that I was so prejudiced that I avoided them for almost 4 decades! I will experiment with different ways to prepare parsnips in the future (I have already collected recipes involving using them in soup and in a mashed version), but as for these roasted ones, I liked everything about them. The taste and texture were both very appealing. My husband summed them up very well, "These taste like sweet potatoes, without the sweet!"

I know parsnips are not a popular vegetable, but don't be afraid of them. If you like sweet potatoes, potatoes and carrots, you'll probably be ok with parsnips as well. I am personally very excited that I have found yet another vegetable that I can roast, because if there is one thing that makes vegetables taste good (aside from turning them into zucchini bread or carrot cake! ;-) ), it's roasting them!

I will continue to fight my Root Vegetable Prejudice..... Watch out, turnips, I'm coming for you next!


  1. I will have to give you my recipe for parsnip mashed potatoes. A big hit at Thanksgiving...