This delightful recipe is by Michelle Abendschan, who writes the Fennel*Twist blog, formerly Je Mange le Ville. She notes, “I am a huge fan of potato pancakes from way back, so when I came across this recipe for parsnip and pear latkes, I was practically out the door to buy a pear in the next second. And oh my, they are so good—crispy, a little sweet from the pear, salty, and delicious. I added bacon, onion, and rosemary to the original recipe ingredients, and if that works for you, I highly recommend it. If not, even without bacon, I can’t imagine these still not being amazing. Just sauté the onion in a little olive oil and continue on from there. Note that these are a little tricky to keep together. You can either add an extra egg white or a whole egg to the batter, or just be very gentle with flipping them over; be prepared to be okay with one or two pancakes falling apart.”
Parsnip and Pear Pancakes with Horseradish Sour Cream
1 slice bacon
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary, (plus more to garnish)
1 small shallot (diced)
1 medium (about 6 ounces) underripe Bosc pear (quartered and cored)
1 large (about 8 ounces) parsnip (peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces)
1 large egg (beaten)
1½ teaspoons prepared horseradish
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
Freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable, peanut, or olive oil (for frying)
½ cup sour cream or low-fat Greek yogurt
1 to 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
Pinch of salt
In a small skillet, cook the bacon. When it is cool enough to handle, crumble it into a medium mixing bowl. Add the chopped rosemary. Meanwhile, add the diced shallot to the pan of bacon grease and cook it for several minutes over medium heat until it turns golden and soft. Add it to the bacon and rosemary.
Use a box grater to grate the pear. Transfer the pear to paper towels; squeeze very dry and then transfer it to the bowl with the bacon. Grate the parsnip and add it to the pear. (You can also use a food processor to grate the pear and parsnip, if you’d like.)
Next, mix in the egg, horseradish, and salt, then mix in the panko and a sprinkle of black pepper.
Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat and coat the bottom with oil. Drop the batter by packed ¼ cupfuls into the skillet; flatten to ½-inch thickness. Sauté until brown and cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
In a small bowl, mix the sour cream and horseradish. Season with a little salt. Serve the parsnip pancakes with the horseradish sour cream and use more rosemary leaves to garnish, if you’d like.
— Michelle Abendschan, Fennel*Twist blog, formerlyJe Mange le Ville (recipe adapted from Bon Appétit magazine)
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