Winter root mash with buttery crumbs

Winter root mash with buttery crumbs

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(37 ratings)

Prep: 50 mins - 1 hr Cook: 40 mins


Serves 10
A little bit of this winter root mash goes a long way - make it a day ahead and cut the stress on Christmas Day

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving for 10

  • kcal158
  • fat9g
  • saturates5g
  • carbs17g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.57g


  • 650g parsnips, cut into even chunks



    The fact that the parsnip is a member of the carrot family comes as no surprise – it looks…

  • 650g swede, cut into same size chunks as the parsnips
    Two slices of swede



    A member of the cabbage family, the swede is often confused with the turnip, though they look…

  • 142ml tub soured cream
  • 1 rounded tbsp hot horseradish (English Provender is good)
    Horseradish root on a wooden chopping board


    hors rad-ish

    Horseradish root is larger than an ordinary radish, and has a hot, peppery flavour.


  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • butter, for greasing



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

For the butter topping

  • 50g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 50g fresh white breadcrumbs (from about 4 slices)
  • a small handful thyme leaves, plus extra for scattering


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 25g parmesan, coarsely grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…


  1. In a large pan of boiling salted water, cook the parsnips and swede, covered, for about 20 minutes until tender. Drain well, then mash them together using a masher or food processor until reasonably smooth but still with a bit of texture. Stir in the soured cream, horseradish and thyme and season with salt and pepper.

  2. Spoon into a buttered shallow ovenproof dish and put to one side.

  3. Make the topping. Melt the butter in a frying pan and cook the onion for 5-6 minutes, until gorgeously golden. Mix in the breadcrumbs and stir to brown and crisp a little. Season with salt and pepper and add the thyme. Take the pan off the heat. Spoon the mixture casually over the top of the mash. Scatter over the parmesan. (Can be made ahead to this point and kept covered in the fridge for up to a day. Or can be frozen for up to a month.)

  4. Bake with the turkey (190C/gas 5/ fan 170C) for 35-40 minutes if doing from cold, 25-30 minutes if not, or 11⁄2-13⁄4 hours from frozen (put foil on top, and remove it for the last 10 minutes) – until golden and crisp on top. Serve scattered with a few more thyme sprigs and leaves.

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Comments, questions and tips

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22nd Feb, 2012
I have tried this recipe and in all the years I have been cooking have never come across anything as this. I rank myself as a pretty good cook and am well known as such but this concoction was literally inedible. The syrup does not go with the mixture the breadcrumb make it too dry and overall the texture and taste was minus,minus,minus. Never again!!!!
13th Oct, 2015
24th Jan, 2012
My boyfriend loved me twice as much after I made this.
9th Dec, 2011
This is lovely great for numbers and dead easy
23rd Nov, 2011
This is a great recipe for Christmas - very easy to make, can freeze in advance and goes straight from freezer to oven so can be prepared well in advance. A favourite for Christmas dinner every year!
7th Nov, 2011
Served this with a Beef & Mushroom Casserole. It was absolutely fantastic and went down well with all my guests. Definitely a favorite now and one that I am sure to be making many times in the colder months. Delicious.
16th Feb, 2011
Made this for a family gathering and there was masses for everyone - certainly serves more than 10. Great to make beforehand - it turned out fine after being frozen. Impressive too! Will make it again.
22nd Jan, 2011
WOW ... what a treat. Really loved this recipe and will definitely make it again!! Was gutted that hubby wanted the leftovers for work as I'd have happily finished the lot!!! I tweaked the recipe slightly to use what I'd got in ... so mine had mascarpone instead of creme fraiche; a generous sprinkle of cayenne pepper instead of horseradish; dried thyme instead of fresh; and a mixture of cheddar and fresh parmesan in the topping. The vegetables I used were potatoes, sweet potato, parsnip and swede. Easy recipe. Thoroughly recommend and went great with the sticky cranberry pork recipe on this site. YUM YUM!!!
26th Dec, 2010
This recipe is amazing and ery easy to make! We had it yesterday as a side dish with our Christmas dinner and everybody loved it. As we are big fans of carrot and parsnip mash I used carrots instead of swedes, the sour cream gives it a gorgeous creamy texture and it is very moreish! I halved the recipe for 4 people and it was more than enough. Delicious!
15th Dec, 2010
Love it. Make it on nearly every occasion - especially Christmas!


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