a basket of freshly gathered parsnips

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 marks the first day of spring. What I look forward to the most is shopping at the local farmers market for the early spring vegetable harvest. One of the spring vegetables that I enjoy cooking with the most is parsnips.

Parsnips are biennial root vegetables that are related to the carrot family. Parsnips are left in the ground throughout the winter and are harvested in the early spring. They have a sweet, nutty flavor and when roasted can be transformed into a delicious soup. 

Below is a roasted parsnip soup recipe that makes for a great meal on a cool spring evening. The soup is best paired with a grilled cheese sandwich.  

Roasted Parsnip Soup Recipe

Ingredients 
  • 6-8 medium-sized parsnips, peeled, washed and medium diced
  • 3 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 3 cloves of minced garlic 
  • 2 onions small, diced
  • 1 medium peeled carrot 
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter 
  • 4 1/2 cups of low sodium chicken stock 
  • 3/4 cup of heavy cream 
  • 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg 
  • chives 
  • salt and pepper to taste 
Preparation
  1. Toss the parsnips and onion with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  2. Place diced onion and parsnips in a shallow baking dish.
  3. Roast parsnips in the oven uncovered for 30-35 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. While parsnips are roasting, place remaining onion, carrot, celery and garlic in a large saucepan and sauté with 1 tablespoon of butter.
  5. Once the parsnips are brown and tender place them in a large saucepan with the other vegetables, add chicken stock and bring to a simmer.
  6. Use an immersion blender to smoothly puree, add extra chicken stock if the soup is too thick. (You can also use a regular blender, if necessary). 
  7. Add the 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg and stir thoroughly. 
  8. Garnish with finely chopped chives.
  9. Serve with the grilled cheese sandwich of your choice. 

P.S. My favorite grilled cheese combination is Sourdough and Extra Sharp Cheese . Yum!

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