Thursday, January 8, 2009

Power to the Parsnip!


Parsnips taste nutty and sweet, without being high in calories, yet this cousin of the carrot is often ignored in the produce aisle. Well, it's time to claim a resurgence of this winter time root vegetable! Power to the parsnip!

I am always searching for an alternative to french fries, one of my favorite indulgences...but one I always enjoy with a side of guilt. When I heard that parsnip fries were a healthier alternative, I immediately ran out and purchased a bag.

I decided to do a new twist on my old favorite, steak frites. Needless to say I was very pleasantly fact so much so that I proceeded to talk about it for about 2 days after, much to my husband’s chagrin. I found the parsnips to have a more complex flavor than potatoes - the flavor was a cross between a regular potato and a sweet potato with a little hint of carrot. The texture is not quite as crisp but it had more density which made me feel fuller faster. Parsnips and potatoes are about the same calorie wise in the raw state. However, the parsnip is much healthier than it’s ready made potato partner.

Parsnip fries are a definite keeper and could be inserted or served along side french fries when entertaining as a healthier alternative. If you feel they are too basic to be served at a party, then why not kick it up a notch and add a fun curry dipping sauce.

For our healthy fries (2 servings)
Cut two pounds of parsnips into sticks and toss with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, ½ teaspoon of sea salt and chili powder to taste. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, turning halfway through cooking time.

Nutrition Information per Serving: 100 calories, 4g fat (0.5g saturated), 80mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 1g protein, 25% vitamin C


Anonymous said...

These sound delicious...especially for someone who doesn't like the sweet potato fries that are the standard french fry alternative. Now if we could only get McDonald's to start serving parsnip fries.

Anonymous said...

Oooh, delish! I've done sweet potato fries at home before but will have to try these parsnip ones. They'd go great with salmon burgers, esp since I'm trying to eat healthier!