Brown Butter Parsnip Puree


At the Brooklyn brasserie Francie, John Winterman and Christopher Cipollone offer this cozy side dish of pureed parsnips. To make it, naturally sweet parsnips are simmered in bay leaf–infused cream until very tender, then pureed in a blender until they take on a silky, mashed potato–like texture. A garnish of diced green apples adds tart, mouthwatering acidity and refreshing crunch, while a generous drizzle of brown butter lends a pleasant richness. At Francie, the parsnip puree is served alongside duck, but it would also be a terrific partner for roast turkey or chicken.

Creamy Parsnips with Brown Butter Gravy and Green Apples
Photo: Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell
Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
30 mins


  • 2 pounds parsnips, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch pieces

  • 4 cups whole milk

  • 4 cups heavy cream

  • 1 bay leaf

  • ½ cup unsalted butter (4 ounces)

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

  • 1 medium-size Granny Smith apple(about 7 ounces), cut into 1/4-inch cubes


  1. Combine parsnips, milk, cream, and bay leaf in a large pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until parsnips are very tender, 15 to 18 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until butter starts to foam and turn brown, 6 to 7 minutes. Set aside, and cover to keep warm.

  3. Drain parsnips, reserving cream mixture. Discard bay leaf. Transfer parsnips and 1 cup cream mixture to a blender; process until very smooth, about 1 minute, adding additional cream mixture as needed until parsnip mixture reaches desired consistency. Add salt and 1/4 cup brown butter; process until combined. Transfer to a serving dish. Drizzle with additional brown butter, and sprinkle with apple.

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