Thursday, April 11, 2013

Oven “Grilled” Parsnips – Could These Replace French Fries?

No chance – but that doesn’t take anything away from this simple, delicious, and quite dip-able roasted parsnips recipe. As I mention in the video, I was inspired by some grilled parsnips that showed up as a side dish at a recent meal, and I wanted that same effect without having to go out to the backyard.

The combination of a very hot oven, the generous cooking time, and a pre-roast, lemon-olive oil soak gets you pretty close to grill marks country. Also, this method seems to mellow the root’s bold flavor, and while the outside remains pleasantly fibrous, the inside gets creamy and sweet.

One note about the use of lemon here: As anyone who has ever tried to cook raw green beans in a tomato sauce will tell you, an acidic cooking liquid can toughen the surface of a vegetable. I learned why in culinary school, but that was in 1984, and I’m kind of fuzzy on anything before the Clinton administration. I’m sure one of our resident scientists will chime in with a concise explanation.

Anyway, whether you’re looking for a new and exciting side dish, or something to dip into aioli besides potatoes, I hope you give this oven “grilled” parsnips recipe a try. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 6 servings:
2 pounds parsnips
juice of one lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
*Aleppo pepper, to taste

*Aleppo pepper is my new favorite ground chili pepper! It’s a moderately hot and fruity pepper that’s said to have “cumin-like undertones,” as Wikipedia puts it. For more information, click here.


asian-malaysian said...

Hi Chef John. Parsnips arent easily available where I live. Would carrots work with this?

SallyBR said...

I've had roasted parnsnips in my list of things to try, and of course completely forgot about it

thanks for the nudge in the right direction! ;-)

Steve said...

Hey Chef! What other homemade dipping sauces can you recommend for these? You know, for those of us that don't like anchovies??? Thanks! :)

Chef John said...

What are your favorite dips? any of those will be great!

rancholyn said...

I love parsnips roasted...I can't wait to add lemon juice

Unknown said...

Where can I find the recipe for the aioli?

Nbdx0645 said...

Hey Chef John,
What vegetable peeler is that? I've seen it in a few episodes and it looks like it peels everything with ease.

Thanks! PS: your videos are awesome.

Chef John said...

A Rosle! Thanks!

shira said...

hey chef john can you tell me how to make the dipp?
ps. love your videos

shira said...

hey chef can you make a video on how to make that dip? (:
ps. love your videos

Unknown said...


This is just perfect healthier option for the the usual fries~ (except for the g.i index... but who cares? It taste awesome and it is fine as long as we don't eat a large amount of it)

Jenluli said...

I have roasted many parsnips to a creamy delicious delight. I made this today and it was a waste of two pounds of parsnips. I'm hoping that it was because the parsnips I found were somewhat skinnier/more spindly than usual and, thus, too tough to make this work. But I suspect that the lemon was at least partially to blame, plus the lemon created a bad after taste. If I omit the lemon entirely, will I get same nice roasted/grilled appearance on the exterior with less chewiness?