I will be the first one to admit I’ve never tried a parsnip in my life until last month when teaching a kids cooking class at the Y. It was fun for all of us because there was no way I could explain this white(ish) veggie with any great knowledge. It’s moments like that when I realize, let’s have fun with this rather than act like I know what I’m doing. Better to “fall on the sword?” And it paid off, because I made light of the topic and asked the kids how many of them had parsnips. No hands – no surprise. I asked how did they think it tastes? “Like a carrot!” Very wise children are… a sweet carrot! People think kids are without ideas, but that’s were we parents can be fooled. I love how God shows me how much of an asset young minds are. It’s not that we don’t have amazing ideas… it’s just that THEY are not burdened by too much knowledge or outside opinions.
This week’s challenge: Ask your child to come up with a recipe concept (assist them in basic needs…aka, this item will need flour, but what would you add?) You would be amazing what “Top Chef” qualities kids do have.
So on to the parsnip. Yes, a sweet carrot is a great definition, and one that fits perfectly into the recipe I’m about to introduce to you. It’s not my recipe, but I did change a couple of things to make it more my own style. And the flavor is JUST A-MA-ZING. It’s just that awesome. Better than any carrot cake if you ask me. It’s flavored like a zesty spice cake if you can imagine…
Better yet? It’s practically healthy. Yep. You heard it from the horses mouth! Why did that expression ever come about? A horse doesn’t actually talk… Moving on!
Got a vegan friend you want to bake for? This recipe from the original owner, made this a vegan recipe. I didn’t happen to have non dairy yogurt on hand, so mine can’t be classified vegan. But you can alter it to be done that way!
Ingredients for cupcakes (adapted from VeganBaking.net):
- 1 Cup Grated Parsnips (about 2 parsnips)
- 1/2 Cup + 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 1/3 Cup Fat Free Vanilla Yogurt
- 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1/2 Teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ginger
- 1/2 Teaspoon Cake Spice (Penzy’s)
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 3/4 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
- 1/4 Cup all-Purpose Flour
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
Directions for cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grate the parsnips with either a hand grater or food processor and set aside. In a stand mixer, combine all dry ingredients together with whisk attachment. Add in the oil, yogurt and parsnips and using the whisk attachment, combine the ingredients together. The texture will be dense.
Place liners in the cupcake tin and spoon batter in. Again, it’s dense, so you will need a spoon like you would with making cookies. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean when tested. Let cool completely.
Method for Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting (adapted from Epicurious):
- 4 oz. softened cream cheese
- 2 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
- 1 Tsp. Ground Ginger spice (add more if desired)
- 3 cups Confectioners Sugar
In stand mixer, combine the cream cheese and butter. Add in 1 cup confectioners sugar and blend. Add in ginger and another cup of confectioners sugar, blend. Add in final cup of confectioners sugar. Pipe on completely cooled cupcakes and let set up. EAT!!