Baked Parsnip Fries and Miracles on 34th Street

Q: Hey tasty tRuth, you keep posting about how New York City is such a magical place to be this time of year. What exactly makes it that way?

A: Hm well, it’s not the snow, because there most definitely still is not any of that on the ground. Let’s hope we won’t have to dream of another white Christmas. But the magic might have something to do with the sudden presence of countless giant Christmas trees, especially when they’re right next to skating rinks, like this one in Bryant Park.

Or the streetside holiday vendors that sell aromatic goods like this Turkish spinach borek.

Or the signature larger-than-life ornaments in Rockefeller Plaza.

There’s no doubt Santa’s presence on 34th Street has something to do with it. (Though snaking lines of impatient children dampen the effect just a little.)

Maybe it’s the incredible whiteness in Columbus Circle, aka Magic Circle.

And I’m mostly positive the magic has something to do with the arrival of parsnips at the Union Square Greenmarket, and the baked rosemary fries I turned them into. If that’s not enough proof that New York is quite the magical place this December, well — I guess you’ll just have to visit me and see for yourself…

Baked Rosemary Parsnip Fries


2 1/2 pounds parsnips, scrubbed and cut into about 3 x 1/2″ strips

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

2 large garlic cloves, minced

3 tablespoons olive oil

Sea salt, freshly ground pepper


Preheat oven to 450°F. Mix parsnips, chopped rosemary, garlic, and oil on a large rimmed baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Spread out in a single layer. Roast for 10 minutes; turn parsnips and roast until parsnips are tender and browned in spots, 10–15 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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