Pic of Parsnips & carrots with mulled cider & thyme

Parsnips & carrots with mulled cider & thyme

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Parsnips & carrots with mulled cider & thyme

Side Serves 4 50 min
These sweet roots are braised with all the flavours of Christmas – a few traditional mulling spices, some zesty clementine and a toot of West Country cider. They’re braised in a pan rather than roasted to free up space in the oven on Christmas day. You can take them three quarters of the way, and then reheat and finish them just before serving, if it helps with your timings. The principle of the cooking is a technique that allows you to cook in a minimal amount of liquid and then to drive the water away at the end, intensifying the flavour and letting the veg take on some colour.


  • 600g carrots, peeled and chopped into 3cm angled pieces
  • 400g parsnips, peeled and chopped into 3cm angled pieces
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 fresh bay leaf
  • 1 clementine, sliced into discs
  • 200ml cider
  • ½ tbsp fresh thyme leaves


Prep time: 10 min
Cooking time: 40 min
  • Step 1

    Heat 1½ tablespoons of oil in a large pan.
  • Step 2

    Throw in the carrots, parsnips and a generous pinch of salt. Fry for a minute or so before adding the cinnamon, star anise, cloves, bay, clementine and half the cider. Clamp a lid on tightly and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until tender. Check them every few minutes. Stir well and check the liquid, adding a dash more cider as/if they’re starting to dry out or catch. Remove the lid for the final 4-5 minutes to let the cider evaporate and allow the veg to colour slightly.
  • Step 3

    Remove from the heat and stir in the thyme leaves. Pluck out the spices but leave the clementine slices. Serve immediately.

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