Most of the time when I try a recipe it's either because it contains an ingredients (or combination of ingredients) that I love or because the photo is so enticing I can't resist. This recipe, however, I made purely out of curiosity. I've never had a parsnip before and I've certainly never tried parsnip bread but I was intrigued. I discovered quick breads and cakes/cupcakes incorporating zucchini this summer so I figured why not try parsnips!
This is a simple quick bread recipe: combine the dry ingredients, combine the wet ingredients and then fold the wet into the dry. The amount of oil in the recipe did give me cause for concern: 1/4 cup of oil for the whole loaf? It didn't seem like enough (the batter was quite thick) and I definitely didn't want a super dense bread. Since I've never baked with parsnips, I didn't know how much moisture they'd add. I decided to play it safe and added another 2 tablespoons or so of oil to the batter. I made 2 mini loaves and baked them for about 45 minutes. The verdict? Overall - good! Much better flavor and moistness after a day on the counter wrapped tightly. The allspice and cloves are quite prominent and the parsnips do lend a bit of sweetness to the bread. I omitted the nuts the recipe called for because I don't like walnuts but next time I'd probably add something for a bit of contrast and texture (maybe chocolate chips). Even though I didn't completely fall in love with this recipe, I like knowing that I can swap parsnips for carrots or zucchini in some of my other favorite recipes!
Spiced Parsnip Bread
from Relish Magazine
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 pound parsnips (about 2 medium), peeled and finely shredded (about 1 1/2 cups for me)
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons walnut or canola oil
1 egg, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (I omitted)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly butter a 9 x 5-inch or 8 x 4-inch loaf pan (I used 2 mini loaf pans).
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, allspice, cloves and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, stir together sugar, parsnips, oil, egg and vanilla. Fold the parsnip mixture into the flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Fold in walnuts, if using. Spoon batter into prepared pan(s).
Bake 55 to 65 minutes, until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven; cool in pan on wire rack.