Parsnips are a member of the carrot family and share the same sweetness, but have more of a mild and delicate nutty flavour. The roots are similar in shape to a carrot and have white, pale orange or pale yellow skin and flesh. Though considered a winter vegetable, they can be purchased all year-round. Parsnips are wonderful when mashed, boiled, roasted or added to casseroles, soups and stews.
Choose parsnips with firm, even coloured skins that are free from blemishes, scars or soft patches. Parsnips can be stored in the crisper section of the fridge for up to seven days.
Did you know? It is much safer to purchase parsnips from a shop or online retailer than trying to harvest them from the wild. Hemlock root, which is deadly poisonous, looks very similar to a parsnip and the two could easily be confused. In addition, picking the vegetable can lead to a rare skin condition called phytophotdermatitis. Experts recommend that gloves are worn while picking, even when working with cultivated varieties.