[Photograph: Anna Markow]

In the case of cooking for picky eaters at home, most parents turn to hiding vegetables in their kids' food. But in this case, I'm not trying to hide my vegetables in a breakfast sweet. In fact, when I found myself with some extra parsnips on hand, I tried to make the most parsnip-y muffins I could possibly bake.

When I bake with carrots, I always add a generous amount of both allspice and cinnamon. Allspice helps to enhance the carrot's natural sweetness, and everything is better with a touch of cinnamon. I knew there had to be an equivalent "booster" spice for parnsip, and I found it: mace. This lesser known spice has a gentler and less overtly doughnutty aroma than nutmeg. I also added a little whole wheat flour and brown butter for nuttiness, plus a handful of dried cranberries to balance the sweetness. The parsnips are grated very roughly so that they are only just cooked through and slightly crunchy—quite the opposite of hiding the vegetable.

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Parnsip Muffins »

About the Author: Anna Markow is a pastry chef obsessed with doing things that no one else does and giving unusual ingredients their time to shine. You can follow her sometimes-pastry-related thoughts on Twitter @VerySmallAnna.

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