With the new year, it’s time for novelties on Chakula.ba. Every month I choose a grocery that is in season, and which is not particularly popular, known or common in our kitchen.

The goal is to find out more about the groceries we can buy in the season, but at the same time we are not used to preparing them or maybe we do not know how to use it in everyday cooking.

New Year seems to be ideal with enriching our diet, right?

In January parsnips is in season.

In the period of the Roman Empire, parsnips or white carrots, as it is often called, was one of the crops most commonly used in eating. In the Middle Ages parsnips was appreciated for the high level of sugar it contains. Essential oils of parsnips were then cooked and used as a sweetener. Prior to the discovery of potatoes, parsnips was one of the basic foods in the diet, because it is rich in carbohydrates. However, in the richness of variety of foods throughout history, parsnips in most of Europe has been “lost” during cooking.

It is mostly used in France and Italy, while in the United States and the UK, it is prepared as a side dish for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Parsnips is rich in vitamins B, C and E, and especially potassium. For these reasons, it is the perfect food for the health of the heart, lungs, liver and kidneys. It is possible to use the parsnips whole – from leaves to roots. The most commonly used are its roots that can be added to various soups or brewers in the same way that we add the carrot. The leaves, on the other hand, can be used as spice plants just like we use parsley.

It’s really strange how easy it is to prepare this vegetable. You can bake it on butter with cheese, grill with honey, cinnamon, star anise and thyme or make mashed potatoes with the addition of lemon juice, olive oil and almonds.

I hope I inspired you to look for parsnips on the market and enrich your diet with a new great food.