roasted parsnips with macadamia nut gremolata

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A busy weekend is winding down, and I'm gearing up for an even busier week leading up to Thanksgiving. Even still, I wanted to stop in here quickly to share this delicious recipe in the hopes that it might end up on your holiday tables. It may seem overly simple -- and it is to prepare -- but I assure you that your friends and family will go crazy for it. Better yet, it's delicious eaten at room temperature, which is always a plus, whether you are traveling and need to bring a side dish to the party, or are hosting and trying to get everything on the table all at once. 

I have so much to be thankful for, and I want to take a moment to thank you all, my readers, for your support -- whether it be an email to tell me you've made a recipe, a sweet comment on a post, or even those of you who simply take the time to just read what I have to say. I appreciate each and every one of you. Wishing you all a relaxing holiday spent with your loved ones. 

 


 

roasted parsnips with macadamia nut gremolata 

This dish is inspired by a glazed carrot and hazelnut gremolata dish that I made in culinary school. I loved the crunch that the hazelnuts added to an otherwise traditional gremolata, and especially enjoyed the pairing with sweet, tender carrots. The below recipe is my own take on the dish. Roasted parsnips add a nice earthy sweetness, which pair beautifully with the fragrant, rich gremolata. And, if you've never tried toasting macadamia nuts, I highly encourage you to do so. They are unbelievably delicious. 

 

for the parsnips:

2 pounds parnsips (about 6), peeled, ends trimmed, and quartered lengthwise

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

 

for the gremolata:

1 1/4 cups whole, raw macadamia nuts (a little less than 1/2 a pound)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2-3 cloves of garlic, finely minced

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

3/4 teaspoon coarse salt (or to taste)

zest of 1 lemon

 

for garnish:

7 ounces full fat greek yogurt

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Arrange the quartered parsnips on a sheet pan in one layer. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Toss to coat. Roast in the oven, tossing the parsnips occasionally, until tender, about 30 - 40 minutes. 

While the parsnips are roasting, prepare the gremolata: arrange the macadamia nuts in one layer on a small sheet pan. Transfer to the oven with the parsnips and allow to toast, shaking the pan a few times, until golden brown, about 7-8 minutes. (Be careful as they burn easily)! Remove from the oven and transfer to a cutting board to cool. Once cool, coarsely chop and transfer to a medium bowl. 

Heat the 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and chopped parsley and sauté, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer to drain the excess oil and add the parsley and garlic to the bowl with the macadamia nuts. (The excess oil can reserved for another use -- it is delicious drizzled as a garnish on just about anything: pasta, crostini, hummus, mashed potatoes, you name it). Add the salt and lemon zest to the bowl and stir to combine well. 

To plate: in a small bowl, mix the greek yogurt with the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Dollop onto a plate, and arrange the parsnips over top. Sprinkle the gremolata over the parsnips, and serve any extra on the side. 

 

Yield: serves 6 as a side (with extra gremolata)