Tortellini Gratinata with Mushrooms and Parsnip Bechamel

We got parsnips this week.  This is the first time we’ve ever received these veggies.  They’re not a very popular vegetable here in America, though they’re extremely popular in Europe.  They basically look like white carrots and can be used in much the same way as their orange cousins.  When I went trolling for a recipe for our parsnips, I ran into this one on Epicurious.com.  It’s complicated, but not difficult.  I like that it replaced some of the butter and cream of a traditional bechamel with the parsnip puree.

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I prepared the recipe almost exactly as the website spells out, hence I’m not reposting the recipe here.  It’s not fast, but it’s really good and yields a ton of left overs.  The only changes I did make were:

  • I didn’t have whole milk, so I used 1 1/2 c skim milk and 1 c cream
  • I didn’t have a full 12 oz of parsnips from our box, so I supplemented the last 4 oz with carrots.  I had a couple extra carrots, too, so I diced them and sauteed them with the mushrooms
  • I didn’t have Gorgonzola dolce, so I used regular old mega-mart Gorgonzola with no ill effects
  • I didn’t have rosemary, so I substituted 1/4 c fresh minced parsley.

I know that’s a lot of “I didn’t haves” but that’s the important lesson to learn when you get a CSA box.  You often won’t get enough of some vegetable, or you’ll get piles and piles of another.  You won’t get the herb you want, but you’ll get plenty of another.  The key is to roll with the punches.  Don’t get too hung up on the exact measurements and ingredients and learn what can be substituted easily.  Once you release yourself from the “have to haves…” it’s so much easier to live with the “didn’t haves…”

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2 thoughts on “Tortellini Gratinata with Mushrooms and Parsnip Bechamel

  1. I was JUST wondering what to do with the parsnips I got in the box this week — perfect timing. I usually just roast them with other root veggies, but this looks so much better!

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