One of the early treasures of spring? Wintered-over parsnips. Parsnips that are left in the ground in the fall, covered with protective mulch and harvested in the early spring are referred to as wintered-over parsnips. The stored starch in the root converts to sugar in the early spring in preparation of new spring growth. These parsnips are especially tender and sweet.
Makes 4-6 servings.
1½ pounds parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
½ pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup green garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon salt
Cracked black pepper to taste
Combine the parsnips and potatoes in a saucepan with ½ teaspoon salt and cover with water. Bring to a boil on high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking for 15-18 minutes (depending on the thickness of the vegetables). The parsnips should be soft enough to mash with a fork on the side of the pan. Drain the parsnips.
Return the parsnips to the saucepan. Use a small whisk or potato masher to mash the parsnips to a smooth consistency. (If you prefer a softer consistency, stir in a few tablespoons of the reserved cooking liquid.)
In a small sauté pan heat the butter on medium. Once melted, add the green garlic and stir occasionally until the garlic has evenly softened, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic butter to the mashed parsnips with the salt and some black pepper. Fold in the butter and green garlic. Taste and adjust the seasonings accordingly.