Honeyed Parsnip Quinoa with Chilli, Cardamom and Orange

By Rachel de Thample From the book FIVE
Honeyed Parsnip Quinoa with Chilli, Cardamom and Orange

I love marrying hearty winter food with exotic, warm flavours. It works so well here. As with pretty much every dish in the book, there are lots of twists and turns you can add to make it your own.

For how many? Serves 4


  • 1kg parsnips, peeled and cut into 4cm long batons
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • a pinch of chilli powder
  • a few glosses of olive or rapeseed oil, plus 4 tbsp for the dressing
  • 200g quinoa
  • 500ml water
  • 3 oranges
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • 4 cardamom pods, seeds finely ground
  • a large handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • a large handful almonds, toasted
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7. Place a large roasting or baking tray on the top shelf of the oven to warm up.

Toss the parsnips and onion in a bowl with a little salt, pepper and chilli powder. Gloss with just enough oil to lightly coat. Tumble onto the warmed tray and roast for about 25–30 minutes, or until golden and tender.

Meanwhile, rinse your quinoa in a fine mesh sieve. Heat a lidded pan and toast the rinsed grains for a moment. Swirl in a pinch of salt and a drop of oil. Pour in the water, pop a lid on, lower the heat and let it cook for 20 minutes, or until all the water is fully absorbed. Remove from the heat, lid still on, and leave to steam for a further 5 minutes. Drain any excess water.

Halve one of the oranges. Squeeze out 8 tablespoons of juice into a clean, lidded jam jar. Mix with the 4 tablespoons of olive oil, a pinch of salt, the honey and ground cardamom. Shake or whisk until fully emulsified. Taste and adjust the seasoning and the orange/oil/honey ratio to your liking.

Once the parsnips are nearly done, pour a little dressing over them, just enough to lightly coat, and pop them back in the oven for a couple of minutes, allowing the dressing to turn to a sticky glaze.

Cut the remaining oranges into 1cm-thick rounds – whip the peel off the rounds. Mix them through the quinoa, along with the chopped parsley and the remaining dressing. Tuck the roasted parsnips in to the mix, once cooked. Scatter the toasted almonds over the top. Serve warm or cold.

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