A starchy root vegetable related to the carrot, similar in shape with a cream-colored exterior and white interior. Parsnips are not grown in warm climates, and are considered a winter vegetable because the first frost of the year is needed to convert the parsnip's starch to sugar, resulting in a unique nutty, sweet flavor. Pasnips were a staple in many diets before being replaced by potatoes. The name originates from the French "pastinca" and "nip" for it's resemblance to the turnip.
Season: available year-round
How to select: Choose moederate-sized, well-shaped roots, that are not limp, pitted, shriveled or spotted. Large parsnips can be woody.
How to store: Refrigerate unwashed, wrapped in a paper towel in a plastic bag up to two weeks.
How to prepare: boil, roast or use in stews, soups and casseroles. Wash, trim the crown and peel aas you would a carrot. If pureeing, leave the skins intact. Steam unpeeled parsnips then slip off skins.