This sumptuous side dish is based on something similar in chef Daniel Green’s brilliant book “The Paleo Diet – Food Your Body Is Designed To Eat”.
The key to success here is roasted garlic, and lots of it!
It might look like a lot of garlic in the recipe, but fret not! The roasting process not only softens the garlic, but tempers its tendency towards bitterness, leaving it soft, mellow, and sweet. Whenever I roast garlic in this way, I can’t help stealing a few cloves for myself, as they’re delicious on their own.
I’ll put it this way, whenever we have Lemon Honey Chicken, never mind the matter of who has had which particular bit of bird, oh no, one of the few things that can be a bone of contention is the number of roasted garlic cloves each of us has scavenged from the roasting pan!
When combined with the sweetness of the parsnips, you end up with a wonderful mash, with real body, for want of a better word. An extra splash of olive oil at the end gives a real luxurious, silky texture.
On this particular occasion, we had the mash with Honey and Walnut Crusted Salmon, something that worked very well indeed.
Having thought about it, I wonder how well it’ll work on top of a Shepherd’s Pie…?
Only one way to find out….
Parsnip And Roasted Garlic Mash
- 8 medium parsnips
- 3 whole bulbs of garlic
- olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- chopped fresh chives
- Pre-heat the oven to 240° C.
- Remove most of the outer layers of the garlic bulbs. Slice off the very top of the bulbs, i.e. the non-root end, exposing the inner flesh of the cloves.
- Make “nests” out of aluminium baking foil, large enough to cover a garlic bulb. Place a garlic bulb in each nest, and drizzle over about a tablespoon of olive oil. Wrap the top of the nest tightly around the bulb, totally enclosing it in foil.
- Place the foil wrapped garlic bulbs in the hot oven, and roast them until they are soft – about 40 – 45 minutes should do the trick. Remove the garlic bulbs from the oven, and allow to cool.
- Once the garlic bulbs have cooled, carefully separate the individual cloves from the bulbs. Squeeze the now softened flesh of the cloves out of the skin, and into a small bowl. Set aside.
- Top, tail, and peel the parsnips. Chop them into ½ inch cubes.
- Rinse the parsnip cubes thoroughly. Place them in a large pan, with cold water to cover. Add about a tablespoon of salt, and bring to a boil. Drop to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes, or until tender.
- Drain the parsnips, and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the roasted garlic, salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, and 2 tbsp of olive oil. Purée with a hand / stick blender. Serve, garnished with a few chopped fresh chives.