The parsnip is a root vegetable related to the carrot. When cooked they have a buttery, slightly spicy, and sweet flavor. Their flavor is reminiscent of butterscotch, honey, and subtle cardamom.
This was my first parsnip experience, and they were awesome.
Figure 1. Saturday night's dinner: crispy pork medallions with roasted root vegetables (red potatoes, carrots, and parsnips) and caramelized Brussels sprouts (yes, I made these - again).
For Roasted Root Vegetables (from Cooking Light): Preheat oven to 450°. Combine 8 ounces quartered small red potatoes, 2 thinly sliced carrots, and 2 thinly sliced parsnips in a medium bowl. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and 1 minced garlic clove; toss well to coat. Arrange vegetable mixture on a rack placed in a broiler pan. Bake at 450° for 28 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes. Serves 4 (serving size: ¾ cup).
Figure 2. Saturday afternoon baking mistake turned genius: candied pecans. Look for my complete cookie post (which generated these delicacies with one batch gone bad) on Monday, December 12 as part of the The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap.
Pastitsio is a Greek and Mediterranean baked pasta dish ususally including ground beef and béchamel sauce in its best-known form. The version I made used mushrooms, not beef, and 'lightened' version of bechamel.
This was my first pastitsio experience. For the amount of time this pastitsio took to put together, I found its flavor a bit disappointing. Unfortunately, I think this dish needs a stick of butter and some heavy cream to really stand out.
Figure 3. In preparation: wild mushroom pastitsio (layer of mushrooms, onions, garlic, tomato sauce, and spices on top of pasta in a light bechamel sauce).
Figure 4. Out of the oven: wild mushroom pastitsio topped with golden mozzarella cheese.
Figure 5. Sunday night's dinner: wild mushroom pastitsio and roasted broccoli.