Mustard and Maple Glazed Roast Parsnips
This is simple glaze transforms the humble parsnip – or for that matter, any root veg – into a thing of complete deliciousness, more than worthy of a place at any celebratory table. It also works well as a glaze carrots, ham and gammon.
  1. Halve the parsnips vertically through the centre. Depending on their size, cut the top halves into 2 or 4 even sized pieces and the leave the bottom halves whole, or cut into 2 pieces horizontally, so that you have even-sized pieces.
  2. Cut out any really woody stems, in a V shaped, from the centre of the parsnips, then place them in saucepan, sprinkle with sea salt, cover and cook gentlely for 6 minutes, until they are just becoming tender. Don’t over-cook. Drain well (you can reserve the liquid for gravy) and pat them dry on kitchen paper.
  3. Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 220C Fan (Gas mark 9, 475F)
  4. When the parsnips are ready, put olive oil into a solid, shallow baking tray and place it on the hob, over direct heat turned to low. Put the oil into a heavy based, shallow roasting tray and place it in the oven for a few minutes, until the oil is really hot. Using an oven cloth to protect your hand, place the hot tray over a low direct heat on the hob. When the oil is sizzling, add the parsnips to the oi with a large, spoon. Baste the parsnips with the oil, tilting the tray and turning them over to coat evenly.
  5. Give the parsnips a good grinding of pepper and bake or about 20 mins, until they’re brown and crispy. Turn them over mid-way and take care not to over-brown or burn them, as they’ll continue browning when you add the glaze.
  6. Meanwhile, mix the mustard and the maple syrup together and brush the mixture liberally over the parsnips. Return them to the over for another 8-10 mins.
  7. Serve the parsnips straight away, sprinkled with a little flaked sea salt.
Recipe Notes

You can use either Dijon or wholegrain mustard and the glaze also works well for ham or gammon.

Cutting the parsnips into even sized pieces and removing any really ‘woody’ centres helps them to cook and brown evenly.  If you want to serve them as parsnip ‘fries’ (I’m thinking cold meats and chutney here), just cut them thinner and cook them for a shorter time.