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Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm

We’ve tried root vegetables in a variety of ways this winter-parsnip in cakes, cured, soups, stews, and the traditional roasting.  They just keep getting better!  I say this in almost every recipe I post, but parsnips are so, so versatile!  Here they come together with traditional hummus ingredients in a smooth, creamy dip topped with spicy oil and lots of fresh pepper.

Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm CSA

When it comes to root vegetables, I’m a big fan of any recipe that calls for quick peeling and chopping into big chunks.  I browsed several recipes, borrowing a few techniques for this one.  These are braised with cumin and coriander until super soft.

Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm CSA

Simmer this on the stove until soft, then cook with the lid off until any extra liquid is absorbed.  While the parsnips are simmering, make the chili oil.

Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm CSA

If you’ve never made chili oil, it couldn’t be simpler, and I was surprised that this ratio yielded a somewhat mild result.  If spicy is not your thing, you can leave it out, but I found the hummus best drizzled with the oil and lots of fresh black pepper.  Without chili oil, the hummus tastes great, but is a little sweeter.  Here I used olive and coconut oil with dried red chilies.  If you don’t have coconut oil on hand, just use all olive.

Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm CSA

Making pita chips is so simple and these are much better for you then the bagged version.  Toast triangles of pita bread in the oven at 400F with or without the drizzle of oil.  This hummus alone IS Paleo, so if you’re following a Paleo Diet serve these with flax crackers, raw veggies, or your favorite Paleo cracker substitute.

Parsnip Hummus by Early Morning Farm CSA

Yes, I used a blender to make this.  The parsnips cook up very soft, and if you have a good blender like a Vitamix this will whirl together very easily.  The Vitamix is definitely higher in price than most blenders, but once you try one out it will quickly become a kitchen essential.  You’ll never need another blender!  We use it all the time for smoothies, soups, salsas, and more.  If you use a blender for the processing, be sure to use the tamper tool and have some extra water nearby for streaming in.

Serve with fresh pepper and chili oil drizzled over the top and garnish with olives.  A full recipe will make A LOT of hummus, which would be great for a party.  I’m including measurements for a half-batch in parentheses in case you want to try a smaller batch.

Parsnip Hummus adapted from Gourmande in the Kitchen
5 medium size parsnips, peeled and cut into large chunks  (2 large parsnips)
1/4 cup olive oil (2 tablespoons olive oil)
2 teaspoons cumin (1 teaspoon cumin)
1 teaspoon coriander (1/2 teaspoon coriander)
1 cup water
2 large garlic cloves, minced (1 garlic clove tahini)
6 tablespoons tahini (3 tablespoons tahini)
juice of 1 lemon (juice of 1/2 lemon)
1/2 – 3/4 cup water (1/4 – 1/2 cup water)
salt + pepper
olives to garnish (optional)
pita bread for toasting (optional)

Chili Oil
3 tablespoons coconut oil
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons dried red chili flakes or crushed red pepper

In a medium sauté pan, bring parsnips, cumin, coriander, a sprinkle of salt +pepper, and 1 cup water to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium, and cover.  Simmer for 20 minutes or until parsnips are very tender.  If there is any liquid left in the pan, cook with the lid off until all liquid is absorbed.

Puree, cooked parsnips and remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy.  If using a blender use tamper to mix while blending.  Stream in water as necessary to get to right consistency.  Season with salt + pepper to taste.

Make the chili oil. Cook oil and dried chili flakes over low heat for about 3 minutes until chilies darken, but don’t burn.  Strain oil and let cool.

Toast pita chips.  Preheat oven to 400F.  Cut pita into quarters, then cut each quarter again, so that the pita is cut into eighths.  Arrange on a baking sheet and drizzle with about a tablespoon of olive oil (optional).  Toast for 10 minutes, until crisp.  Let cool and serve with hummus.

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