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Eclecticisms: Parsnip and Carrot Mash with Feta

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Parsnip and Carrot Mash with Feta

Today's veggie feature  is... the parsnip! Parsnips are a vegetable I had on a semi-regular basis as a kid, usually in stews and soups, but I'd never actually made them myself. As mentioned in a previous blog, I've been trying to think of topics to write about in between baking recipes that won't be super boring (or way too personal), and I think I'm going to try and feature one ingredient/food occasionally. I will include recipes that demonstrate an easy way to incorporate the food of topic into your diet/menu plan. shows that parsnips have..
99 calories per cup
14% DV potassium
26% DV Fiber (woah!)
3% DV protein
0% Sodium and cholesterol!

A parsnip, cousin to the carrot, is a winter root-vegetable. In case you've never tried parsnips before, their taste can be described as similar to a carrot's, only with a bit of a kick to it. I've seen them described as mild turnips as well as sweeter versions of white carrots. Parsnips were a staple before the potato was introduced to many cultures and has since taken a seat on the sidelines.

You can cook parsnips anyway you would a carrot. Various sources suggest steaming them and then peeling their skins off instead of peeling first, to help retain nutrients. Packed with potassium, folic acid and fiber, this veggie is good tasting and good for you.

I saw a few parsnip recipes while poking around the web, including a couple for carrots and parsnips mashed together. The couple I looked at called for onions and/or herbed butter and sounded great, but once I'd seen the mashed option I was ready to experiment. I bought some feta, which I figured would be a great salty balance to the sweetness of the vegetables, and I was right. I must say, I'm pretty proud of the results I ended up with!

Parsnip and Carrot Mash (w/ feta)

*Serves 2-3

4 medium parsnips
4 medium carrots
1-2 Tbs Butter
3 oz feta (more for sprinkling, if desired)

Peel parsnips and carrots. Place about 1 Cup water in a large pot and add a steamer basket. (The silicone ones are the BEST!) Add veggies and cover. (The carrots seemed to cook slower, so put those underneath the parsnips, so they receive more steam.)

Like a potato, parsnips will begin to brown if peeled and left to sit. Be sure to peel them right before you plan to use them! If very large, it is suggested you remove the core of the parsnip, as it is bitter.

Cook on medium high to high heat for about 15 minutes, checking periodically after 10. The veggies should be cooked until soft, but not falling apart.

Once cooked, drain water and return veggies to the pot without the steamer basket. Add butter and feta, and mash well (using a potato masher).

Serve warm, sprinkled with more feta if desired.

This healthy, colorful dish is easy, fast and affordable. Make it a part of  your next meal and let me know what you think!

Happy eating!

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At March 26, 2011 at 9:30 AM , Blogger angelina said...

this looks really yummy! (and so easy!)

At March 26, 2011 at 3:58 PM , Blogger ohkeeka said...

I love my silicone steamer basket too!

Even though you know I'm not a fan of feta, this does look really good. You are awesome!


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