Autumn Casserole with Savory Streusel Topping

September 29, 2011
0 Ratings
  • Serves 6 to 8
Author Notes

For Thanksgiving I like dishes that can be partly made ahead, then finished while the turkey is resting. I wanted to do a play on a sweet potato casserole, but go savory with it. I tried a variety of root vegetable pairings, and the clear winner was carrots and parsnips. The topping combines panko and pepitas with fresh herbs. Bonus: the light orange filling and greenish brown topping are a perfect autumnal color palette, just begging to be added to a delicious feast! —hardlikearmour

What You'll Need
  • Autumn Casserole
  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots
  • 1 1/2 pounds parsnips
  • salt
  • 4 ounces mascarpone
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons half-and-half
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • butter (for the pan)
  • Savory Streusel Topping
  • 1/2 cup panko
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh sage
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and cut into 3 pieces
  • 1/2 cup raw hulled pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  1. Heat oven to 375º F with a rack in the upper middle position. Peel carrots and parsnips, and cut into 1- to 1 1/2-inch pieces. Transfer carrot and parsnip pieces to a 3 to 4 quart saucepan. Add enough water to cover the carrots and float the parsnips.
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon salt, and reduce heat to medium. Simmer until carrot pieces can be easily pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes.
  3. While carrots and parsnips are cooking, make your streusel topping. Place panko, flour, salt, pepper, sage, and thyme into the bowl of a food processor with the blade attachment. Pulse several times to combine. Scatter butter and pumpkin seeds over the panko mixture. Pulse until the mixture is moist and crumbly in appearance. Transfer mixture to a bowl. Set aside (if making ahead cover and refrigerate.) NOTE: you will be using the food processor again, it does not need to be washed yet!
  4. Carefully pour carrots and parsnips into a colander, and allow to cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Butter a 2-quart baking dish and set aside.
  5. Transfer carrots and parsnips to the bowl of the food processor. Add the mascarpone, 2 tablespoons of half-and-half, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and nutmeg. Pulse until vegetables are starting to break down, then process until smooth. Scrape the bowl once or twice during processing, and add remaining half-and-half if necessary to create a silky texture. Season with additional salt if needed.
  6. Transfer carrot-parsnip purée to the buttered baking dish, and use a rubber spatula to smooth into an even layer. (If making ahead, cover and refrigerate at this point. Remove from fridge at least 30 minutes before baking.) Sprinkle streusel evenly over the surface. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the streusel topping is lightly browned.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • TheWimpyVegetarian
  • boulangere
  • sexyLAMBCHOPx
  • Niknud
  • gingerroot
I am an amateur baker and cake decorator. I enjoy cooking, as well as eating and feeding others. I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with my husband and our menagerie. I enjoy outdoor activities including hiking, mushroom hunting, tide pooling, beach combing, and snowboarding.

13 Reviews

lyonesset October 6, 2011
How do you think this would work f I didn't puree the vegies but left them as they are after boliing - I'm guessing pretty soft around the edges?

I'm not a fan of very soft textures - and I don;t have a food processor!
hardlikearmour October 6, 2011
I definitely think it could work. If I weren't puréeing, I'd probably set it up more like a fruit crisp and roast the veggies, and maybe add the topping after 15 to 20 minutes to make sure it didn't burn.
lyonesset November 10, 2011
Thank-you! I might give this a go - will let you know how it works out.
TheWimpyVegetarian September 30, 2011
I love this streusel topping! I'm going to join boulangere and make a LOT of it - I can think of all kinds of things to use it on!! YUM!
hardlikearmour September 30, 2011
You and boulangere were in my thoughts when I constructed this one, because of your nut allergies. I think it would work well with other herb and/or spices, too, so please experiment!
boulangere September 30, 2011
I'll have to make twice as much of the savory streusel because I plan to munch on a lot of it. Beautiful flavors.
hardlikearmour September 30, 2011
LOL! The streusel is pretty tasty on it's own & no nuts!
sexyLAMBCHOPx September 30, 2011
Liking this so!
hardlikearmour September 30, 2011
Thanks, sLCx!
Niknud September 30, 2011
What a gorgeous picture. You're right - the colors are fantastic. Bet it tastes pretty good too!
hardlikearmour September 30, 2011
Thank you, Niknud! My husband and I both liked it. It took me 5 attempts to get a combination I was happy with.
gingerroot September 30, 2011
I love the contrast of naturally sweet root vegetables with an herb-y, crumbly savory top. Yum!
hardlikearmour September 30, 2011
Thanks, gr! It works surprisingly well. The topping adds some needed textural as well as flavor contrast.