I fail at microwaving parsnips.
After peeling the parsnips and removing their woody cores (the cookbook claimed this should be neither tedious nor time-consuming; I want to know where they're getting their parnips), I put them in a bowl with a few tablespoons of water, as the recipe indicated, and then covered with plastic wrap, as the recipe indicated, and then put them in the microwave for 12 minutes (the recipe said 15, but I figured I should be safe).
About 8 minutes in, Chris turned to me and said "you know, the microwave is... smoking." I turned around. Clouds of white smoke were billowing around the tiny black appliance. I hit the STOP! STOP! STOP NOW! button* and was introduced to the deliciously earthy smell of... burning parsnip. Also the not-as-pleasantly-earthy smell of melting plastic wrap.
*due to space constraints, the actual button label was abbreviated to "STOP".
What happened: parsnips are absorbent. Water went away. Waterlogged parsnips went OH! Energy! Let's get it and then MELT THINGS! And... and... BURN OURSELVES!
A bowl of charred parsnips is now soaking in hot water in the sink.