Friday, 22 April 2011

Parsnips Molly Parkin - A Random Recipe

I have absolutely no idea why this dish is named after this flamboyant 60's journalist, perhaps it was her favourite dish... perhaps someone thought it looked a little like her... or perhaps this was the dish she was famous for making at parties..? whatever the reason, this recipe, taken from the 1980's book entitled Cook for Hire by Michelle Berriedale-Johnson is rather an odd one for a book which is supposed to suggest dishes that are good for parties and functions... I just can't imagine serving this at a wedding, bar mitzvah or corporate presentation... but then this was the 80's and they did things very differently then... I suppose parsnips were the height of fashion back in the day...?

... and i'm bloody lucky they were because without them I could have ended up with one of the other really odd recipes from this book, which I had to buy for a 'Cooking for Cash' course I did back in the early 90's... recipes such as Puton of Pigeons... or Sherried Potatoes... or Turkish Prawn Pilaff... or even Beef, Mushroom and Aspic Mould... anyone?

... but hey, this is Random Recipes and this was my first ever cook book... so there you go...

Parsnips Molly Parkin

1 large parsnip - sliced very thinly
3 medium tomatoes - sliced (I used cherry tomatoes which I simply halved)
12oz grated strong cheddar cheese
1 pint double cream
a few pinches of sugar (each layer)
salt and pepper
fresh rosemary

- heat some oil and butter in a pan and gently saute the parsnips till golden on both sides

- layer them along with the tomatoes, cream and grated cheese into a casserole dish, sprinkling herbs and salt and pepper with each layer, the top layer should be grated cheese

- roast in a hot oven for 40 - 50 minutes until golden

don't forget you have until the end of the month to submit your entries... I've already had quite a few and it's been a bit of a roller coaster memory ride for many of you.

eat and of course, enjoy!


  1. Tomatoes and parsnips together? It seems a random choice of ingredients - very appropriate for your random recipe challenge! LOL!

    Did you like it?

  2. it was actually quite nice, but I think that was the cheese and cream talking... really odd...

  3. It looks really delicious, but how can you go wrong with cheese and cream?

    I think Duke would have looked better in a top hat rather than a bonnet, he may not look it, but he's 20 pounds of terror! LOL!!! You may enjoy this tidbit, I had to hold a cookie in my hand while taking the photo in order for him to pose for me!

  4. I'm very impressed by the cream+cheese to veg ratio in this recipe!!! The other recipes sound ... interesting too! Reminds me of one of my mum's cookbooks with savoury jellied salads and such like.

  5. I love good vegetable baked dishes. This just looks perfect.

  6. Trying to wrap my mind around the tomato/parsnip pairing ... very strange ... like winter and summer out on a cheesy date! Hmmm...

  7. Hi honey you won't believe it, but I may have got to the bottom of things regarding the Parkin Parsnips and here's the reason for their name. Firstly they were invented by Denis Curtis in the 1960s. Parkin, the writer and broadcaster, hated parsnips, but combining their sweetness with acidic tomatoes and plenty of butter and cream changed her mind. It’s what we used to call a layer-bake. In this instance it is of thinly sliced, lightly fried parsnips, peeled and seeded tomatoes, grated Gruyère and cream, with a breadcrumb topping. Sophie, Parkin’s daughter, apparently suggested slicing the parsnips super-thin with a potato peeler and not frying them
    George keeps asking when you're coming to stay again as he loves our obsession for cooking food the whole weekend together and enjoys looking forward to the next meal we invent. Love Jenny x

  8. Sounds great! I love parsnips and this looks perfect. Random or not, I'd eat it anyway :)

  9. It sounds unusual, parsnips and tomatoes, but delicious I bet with the cheese and cream... :)
    I'm glad you didn't get the aspic.
    Enjoy your weekend Dom.

  10. I would probably eat anything if it was covered in cheese and cream but this sounds rather delicious I think. Tomatoes are not a first choice as a pairing with parsnips but I bet they cut through the richness of the sauce and it worked quite well!!

  11. I remember my mum coming back from a course with this recipe, and then making it for a long time. Sadly, my mother was completely bought into the whole low fat thing, and so the cream and cheese were massively downgraded to milk and low fat cheese. I wasn't quite as fond of that version as I think I might be of this!

  12. Oh Dom, looks delicious! Happy Easter!!LOL

  13. Do you know that I have never had a parsnip. I know from reading cook books that they are yummy pureed with carrots or with apples in a soup. Your dish looks delicious though Dom!!

  14. What a weird collection of recipes - sounds as though they were more 70s than 80s. Parsnips with cream and cheese sounds good, but I think I'd rather have the tomatoes baked on the top - if at all! I made my random recipe on Saturday, but have yet to post it.

  15. I really love the sound of this dish - anything 'Molly Parkin' would be worth trying, but I think the combination sounds lovely too.

  16. According to Wikipedia, Molly Parkin was a Welsh painter and journalist who was "banned from the BBC for too much swearing" and was ranked "24th in Timeout magazines review of London's best erotic writers". All of which makes me like this dish a little more! Btw, I just posted my random recipe and emailed you my link, Dom.

  17. Very good recipe because it's a different way to prepare a pizza but I think that meat was missing in this recipe but it doesn't matter because I think that the final result is so good!

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