Turnip Season Is on the Way

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Turnips, in season in our area from October to March, is a vegetable most often grouped with root vegetables, but in reality, belongs to the cruciferous family whose cousins are Brussels sprouts, kale, and broccoli. The vegetable is characterized by a white round-ish shape, with a beautiful crowning blush of purple, and a green leafy stem.

As a member of this family, the turnip is known for its high nutrient count and its low-calorie density, making it a perfect food to add to your healthy eating plan. In one medium-sized turnip there are just 34 calories, 4 grams of fiber when cooked, and 1 gram of protein. It also contains more than half of your daily vitamin C needs

 I’m not a super fan of turnips, but some of these recipes make them super appealing!! Give them a try!

 

Simple Roasted Turnips

Ingredients

  • 7 cups turnips, peeled and cut into 1 ½ inch chunks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dry thyme
  • Pinch of garlic powder

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Toss turnips, oil, and salt in a large bowl. Spread out on a large rimmed baking sheet. Transfer to the oven. Roast, stirring once or twice, for 30 minutes. Sometimes I will roast longer to make them a little crispier.
  3. Mix oregano, thyme, and garlic in a small dish. Remove the turnips from the oven. Sprinkle the turnips with the herb mixture and toss them with a spatula to coat evenly.
  4. Return to the oven and roast, until the turnips are tender when pierced with a fork, and browned in spots, about 5 minutes longer. Serve warm.

Yields 4 cups.

 

Quick Pickled Spicy Baby Turnips

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 fresh small jalapenos, halved lengthwise, seeds removed, optional for heat
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 7 ounces baby turnips, about 3 cups, very thinly sliced
  • 1 cup sliced red onion

Directions

  1. Combine first 9 ingredients in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat, cool 10 minutes.
  3. Place turnip and onion in a bowl, pour vinegar mixture over turnip mixture. Cool completely. Best when covered tightly and refrigerated up to a week. Can be served immediately.

Creamy Mashed Turnips

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ pounds turnips, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes
  • 2 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Fresh chives for topping, optional

Directions

  1. Bring a large saucepan or pot of water to boiling, add cubed turnips. Return to boiling, reduce heat. Simmer, covered, about 25 minutes or until turnips are very tender. Drain well, return to saucepan.
  2. Using a potato masher, mash turnips until nearly smooth. Add cream cheese, mash until well combined.
  3. Stir in garlic, pepper, and salt. Serve warm. Top with chives, or if you are cooking a protein, you can top with gravy.

Pork Roast with Apples, Cabbage, and Turnips

Ingredients

(modified to be cooked in the slow cooker)

  • 1, 3-pound boneless pork loin, trimmed
  • 2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 1 slice smoked bacon, chopped
  • 5 cups thinly sliced peeled tart apple
  • 3 cups, 1-inch, cubed, peeled turnips
  • ¾ cups dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. In a slow cooker, place trimmed pork loin, top with onion, bacon, turnips, cabbage, wine, brown sugar, cider vinegar, salt, and pepper. Set to High. Cook for approximately 4 hours. At this time add chopped apples, cook on High for an additional two hours, turn off pot and allow to cool some and set. Slice and serve.

Serves 10.

Healthy Chicken Chowder

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ pounds, boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or tenders
  • ½ teaspoon salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 2 large turnips, peeled, and cut into 1-inch pieces.
  • 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chopped kale, (can purchase frozen and prechopped, if you cannot find fresh)
  • 3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons water

Directions

  1. Cut chicken into 1-inch pieces and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, 3-4 minutes. Remove and transfer to a plate.
  3. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot. Add turnips, mushrooms, onion, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is limp, 3-5 minutes. Stir in kale, broth, and rosemary. Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the pot, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cover, stirring once or twice, until the turnips are tender, about 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, mix cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Stir the mixture into the stew and cook until thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and season the soup with the remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt.

Serves 6.

(This recipe was adapted from an Eating Well recipe)

Creamy Turnip Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons stick margarine
  • 3 cups chopped onion
  • ¾ cup chopped shallots
  • 4 cups, diced, peeled turnips
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Chopped Chives, optional

Directions

  1. Melt margarine in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and shallots and sauté for 4 minutes. Add turnips, sauté 2 minutes. Stir in water and broth, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer 30 minutes, or until turnips are tender.
  2. Place 1/3 of the turnip mixture in a blender, (I use an immersion blender here), process until smooth. Pour pureed mixture into a large bowl. Return turnip puree to pan, stir in heavy cream and pepper. Cook until thoroughly heated. Serve in soup bowls, top with chives if desired.

** I would certainly cook this soup in a slow cooker, just add the cream towards the end and blend well.

Parmesan Crusted Smashed Turnips

Ingredients

  • 12 small to medium turnips, young and tender are best
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Chopped fresh chives, optional topping

Directions

  1. Place peeled turnips in a pot of salted water to cover. Bring to a boil. Cook 20 to 30 minutes or until turnips can be pierced easily with a knife.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  3. Place the turnips on a clean kitchen towel or double layer of paper towels. Gently press each one down until it’s about ½ inch high. Let them drain for 15 minutes then carefully flip them over onto a dry section of the towel or paper towels, so that each side dries.
  4. Use non-stick spray to coat a baking sheet. Place the flattened turnips on the baking sheet. Brush each turnip with a little olive oil and garlic combination. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over each turnip, gently pressing down.
  5. Carefully and quickly flip each smashed turnip over. Repeat with the remaining olive oil and garlic combination and cheese.
  6. Bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes. Flip each turnip and bake an additional 15 minutes. Garnish with fresh chopped chives if desired.

Serves 6.