One of the vegetables we developed a late love for is turnips, and here we bring together our favourite turnip recipes, just for you.
Turnips were our featured vegetable last Winter and into Spring. We had not used them a great deal in the past, so wanted to explore their use. We added several new dishes, and especially several new turnip dishes from India.
This is a Punjabi turnip dish, easy to make, with an onion-tomato sauce. It takes no effort at all apart from some peeling, slicing and dicing. A perfect dish for an afternoon snack or a quick meal with some chapatis.
Can I ask you how often you cook with turnips? Yes, I thought so. Me too. But do try this Indian dish with a hint of the North and a touch of the South. The coconut milk pairs very well with creamy turnip. The recipe is adapted from one provided by The Splendid Table.
We’ve had a little focus on Swedes and Turnips last Winter, as we realised that we were not appreciating these underrated vegetables enough. It is Spring as I write, but swedes, turnips and parsnips are still in the green grocers, and the weather is cold. So we decided to add a gratin to our list of recipes for these Wintery roots.
Turnips are one of a group of forgotten winter vegetables, along with swedes and parsnips. Some would add cauliflower and cabbage to the list. We adore turnips, cooked or raw, on their own or in salads.
This recipe from Plenty More by Ottolenghi, blanches the turnips and then mixes them with a heady paste of chilli and spices. It is Oh So Good.
It’s a heady condiment, a bit like a pickle, which keeps in the fridge for a few days. It’s great added to sandwiches, wraps and salads, or served with a curry, with a herby rice, or with roti and chutney.
Some of the quickest and really good spicy dishes from India are those that take a vegetable or two and stir fry them with a few spices. These subzi dishes are wonderful side dishes, or make a simple lunch or supper served with rice or Indian flatbread.
Many of our Winter root vegetables are not as common in India, and most uses of them take existing recipes and replace the vegetable (e.g. carrot) with turnip, swede, parsnip, etc. As the Indian diaspora settles around the world, and as European and American vegetables make greater appearances in India, this will change over time.
This recipe takes a bunch of Winter vegetables and magics them into a subzi. Turnip, Swede and Cauliflower are used. Mixed with onions and spices, it makes a curry worthy of Winter. For freshness, scatter loads of coriander on top and finish with a squeeze of lemon or lime.
Similar dishes include Roasted Cauliflower with a Chilli Tomato Sauce, Punjabi Turnip Curry, Turnips in Coconut Milk, Turnip and Swede Gratin, Turnip with Spices, Okra and Onion Subzi, Kohlrabi Subzi, and Aloo Palak Subzi.
If you are a reader of our Winter posts you know that we love to use the oven at any time of the day. It warms the kitchen, living areas and us. Plus it fills the space with the most delicious of aromas.
This is a great dish to throw into the oven on those cold days to warm the space and provide great food. Use the roasted vegetables as a side dish, or as a hot or room temperature Winter salad with a yoghurt and cumin seed dressing.
The recipe needs enough small-diced vegetables to pile into your baking dish to a depth of 5 cm, so I use a small baking dish for this one. And we are going to slow bake them for a couple of hours, so leave yourself enough time. We often make it first thing in the morning for lunch time salads.
Similar recipes include Sautéed Butternut and Spinach with Roasted Mushrooms and Roasted Garlic, Turnip and Swede Gratin, Butter Braised Turnips, Vegetables with Indian Flavours, Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Figs, Baked Parsnips with Parmesan.
Brassicas. Both of our quintessentially winter vegetables – turnip and swede (aka swede turnip and rutabaga) – belong to the brassica family. But they have quite different attitudes. The turnip is sophisticated, while the swede is common and a bit bogan. Turnips are white with purple tops, crisp and slightly bitter. They are perfect eaten raw in salads or as snacks, and are delightful if cooked but still retain some crunch. The flavour mellows on cooking. The swede is pretty unusual in that it’s yellow – more so than its sister vegetable, turnip, and some will say that they are sweeter. But mostly they are described as being strongly flavoured. They can also be eaten raw in salads, or, more commonly, are cooked.
Today, a simple dish with turnips. They are braised quickly in butter and rosemary before being salted and served. A gentle, understated flavour, and delicious.
This delightfully simple salad can be made with either raw or caramelised turnips, for completely different tastes. Caramelising them removes the tang of the raw turnips, so it depends on your tastes and your mood for the day. I love to slice the turnips (or daikon, which can be used instead of turnips), but you can also shred or julienne the raw ones or cut the caramelised ones into thin wedges (about 0.5 cm) before cooking.
It is such a simple salad, it takes 30 seconds to get together once the turnips are prepared.
We use Australian measurements: 1 tspn = 5ml; 1 Tblspn = 20ml; 1 cup = 250ml.
We have had a bit of a thing for turnips this year, and recently we found the most gorgeous ones at the Organic stall in the Adelaide Central Market. It seems a crime to peel them, but we did, and made this gorgeous curry that comes from Kashmir.
The turnips are cooked with spice powders until tender, then coated in a yoghurt sauce. The central spice is fennel and it is a great match to the creamy turnips.