Similar to carrots, parsnips are more commonly used in Europe in soups and stews, but their sweetness and texture also make them perfect for oven roasting. Parsnips are a cream-colored, tapered root vegetable and have a strong resemblance to parsley root. I don’t think I’ve ever seen parsley root sold in our local grocery stores, but if you’re interested in learning more about them there’s a great article on the Food and Garden Blog.
Although parsnips are available year-round, they’re best in the dead of winter when frost converts the vegetable’s starch to sugar. For tips on purchasing and cooking parsnips, check out this informative article by The Kitchn.
Balsamic Roasted Parsnips and Carrots
- 1 1/2 pounds carrots peeled
- 1 1/2 pounds parsnips peeled
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 4-oz. package feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup chopped dried sweet cherries
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Slice carrots and parsnips lengthwise into long, thin strips.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, and 3 tablespoons olive oil. Pour over the veggies and toss gently to coat.
- Place on a lightly greased 15- x 10-inch jelly-roll pan and season with salt and pepper.
- Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until vegetables are tender and browned, stirring every 15 minutes.
- Combine all ingredients, tossing gently. Transfer cooked carrots and parsnips to a serving platter and gently toss with the feta cheese mixture. Serve immediately.