Parsnip and Potato Mash with Spiced Onions

Friday 4 October 2013

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I put my hand up.  The humble potato is my favourite vegetable.   I can eat potatoes in any way shape or form.  I don't have a favourite.  They all have me drooling.  That's why low carb doesn't work for me.  I just can't live without my taters.  A day without a potato in it in some way shape or form is just not a good day for me.     

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Aside from the fact that they're so tasty, potatoes are also quite good for you, and contrary to popular belief, they are not fattening. It's what you put with them that puts on the pounds . . . not the potatoes.  They contain a useful amount of Vitamin C, iron, Vitamins B1 and B2, no cholesterol, virtually no fat and are low in sodium.  Sounds healthy to me!

It's the butter, cream, oil, etc. that pack on the pounds . . . oh well.    

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One of my favourite ways of eating potatoes is mashed, and I am happy to say Todd loves his mash too.  Aside from being delicious, it's so versatile!  You can mix mashed Swede with it, mashed carrots, celeriac, cheese, garlic, etc.   Virtually anything that is mashable or meltable goes well in mashed potatoes!  They are virtually a delicious canvas just waiting for you to put your brush to!  

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Today I mixed some parsnips with my potatoes to make a wonderfully flavourful and creamy mash.   I love parsnips too.  The two together are white bliss!   Especially when you add some cream and a knob of butter. ahem . . . but we won't talk about that will we.   

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I topped them with some spicy fried onions, which are also a favourite of ours.  Have you ever noticed how good onions smell when they are frying???   There is a street cart in Chester City Centre that always sends the smell of fried onions wafting through the air.  One of these days I am going to buy something from him!  It just smells soooo good!  

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Anyways . . . these creamy potatoes with their spiced fried onions topping went down a real treat with our sausages for our dinner today.  Two thumbs up all round!  

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*Parsnip and Potato Mash with Spiced Onions*
Serves 4
Deliciously different.  Great with roasted and grilled meats.  All you need is a bit of veg on the side.

400g of potatoes (a scant pound)
700g of parsnips, peeled (1 1/2 pounds)
2 large onions, peeled and very finely sliced
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
pinch sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
the juice of 1/2lemon
100ml of single cream (1/3 cup)
75g of butter (1/4 cup)
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
salt and black pepper to taste  

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Peel the potatoes and cut into bite sized chunks.  Do the same with the parsnips.  Place them into a large saucepan.  Cover with lightly salted water.  Bring to the boil then reduce to a rapid roll and cook until all the vegetables are fork tender.   Drain very well.  Return to the pan and place it back on the residual heat of the burner, covered with a tea towel to help them dry out some.   While the potatoes and parsnips are cooking, cook the onions.   Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Add the onions and a pinch of sugar.  Cook over medium heat until they begin to turn golden brown.  Turn the heat up to high and cook, stirring frequently until some of them begin to brown and caramelize.   Stir in 1/2 tsp of the cinnamon and the lemon juice.  Season with salt and black pepper to taste.  Keep warm.

Mash the potatoes and parsnips well, adding the cream and the butter.   Beat well and add the remaining cinnamon and cayenne pepper.  Season to taste with salt.   They should be smooth and fluffy.  Spoon into a heated serving bowl and top with the fried spiced onions.   Serve hot.


  1. I am the only one in our house who likes mash; the others aren't normal!

  2. How do you cope Tracey??? I don't think I could!! Thank goodness the Toddster is as manic about Mash as I am!!xxoo

  3. I'd have to say potatoes and onions are are favorites!

    Sorry to be MIA. Was out of the office for 3 days and don't computer from home.

    Happy weekend.

  4. I have always said that if I had to choose one food to live on for ever it would be potatoes in any way shape or form! Then I developed diabetes ....but I sneek them in about once every 2 weeks ....and nothing better to spice them up than onions! Champ and colcannon are my favorites...and fried with onions and scalloped and loaded baked potatoes. :)

  5. I'm the mash potato lover in this house too, although we all eat them, we never bought store bought potatoes until my Dad dies 10 years ago, I have never mashed them with parsnips, sounds yummy! I have to have butter and gravy on mine oh and sometimes cheese oh and sometimes fired onions, ooops, there goes the healthy right? Thats a beautiful photo on facebook you put up of Mitzie, that face melts my heart!

  6. Parsnips are so delicious.
    Never mashed with up with potatoes.
    Can't wait to try.
    Thanks, Marie!

  7. I love potatoes as well. I often mash a swede in with mine but the kids find that the swede tastes so strong it overwhelms the potato taste. I'll have to try parsnips instead. I do make a pear and parsnip puree that I like.

  8. OH, I hope I never develop Diabetes Linda, it would be so hard to go without potatoes!

    Home grown potatoes are the best Laurie!

    I mix lots of things with mash, but this is one of my favs.

    The pear and parsnip puree sounds lovely!

  9. Mashed potatoes are one of my favorite foods!! Now I want some... I made parsnip puree once, it was quite nice, but I still like the classic best. And those onions look mouthwatering! You're a genius with "humble" meals. To me, pure comfort food!


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