Another recipe courtesy of the Ottolenghi Cookbook, the ingredients for this mash suggest an autumnal dish, yet the addition of creme fraiche and butter gives it a lovely, summery lightness. There's no need to stick rigidly to the "pumpkin and parsnip" combo; in fact, when I made this yesterday, I used butternut squash, sweet potato, a carrot and two parsnips. Celeriac, turnip and swede would also work very well here. The addition of roasted garlic is inspired, lending a delicious extra sweetness to the soothing flavour and texture of the root vegetables. Serve with roast chicken or spring lamb, or robust fish.

Parsnip and Pumpkin Mash
Serves 4-6

600g (peeled weight) pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into 2-3cm dice
5 medium parsnips, peeled & cut into large chunks
3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 whole head of garlic
200ml sunflower oil
2 onions, sliced into rings
80g unsalted butter
1 tsp ground nutmeg
300g creme fraiche, at room temperature
15g chives, roughly chopped
salt and black pepper

Preheat the oven to 200C (Gas 5). Toss the pumpkin or squash with the olive oil and a little salt and pepper, spread out on a baking tray and roast until soft and mashable (appox 30-45 mins). Meanwhile, cut about 1cm off the top of the garlic head and place in the bottom part of the oven, next to the roasting squash. Cook for approx 30 mins until tender and soft.

While the pumpkin is roasting, cook the parsnip (or other root vegetables) in boiling, salted water for approx 30 mins until soft. Drain and keep warm.

Heat the sunflower oil in a medium saucepan, heat well and fry the onion rings in 2-3 batches until brown and crispy (almost burnt). Drain on kitchen paper.

Mix all the veg together in a large bowl, or in a food processor. Hold the garlic head and press out the soft flesh Add the nutmeg, butter and seasoning. Gently fold in the creme fraiche and chives to form a ripple in the mash (that's the "cheffy bit"!). Spoon a mound onto each serving place and garnish with the fried onions and a drizzle of olive oil.


  1. Niceness! I've done a few bits from his books also and like this flavour combos - they can often be simplified a bit too.


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