Fresh, sweet turnips are an unknown vegetable to most people as they are not found in most grocery stores. This is one benefit of buying fresh vegetables directly from a farmer: you get the privilege of accessing tasty treats like these! Hakurei turnips (2)

Turnips are easy to prepare, and there is no need to peel them. They can be eaten raw or cooked. Raw, they are crunchy, juicy, slightly sweet, mild. Cooked, they are tender, soft/creamy textured, pair well with many other flavours.

3 kinds turnips

Left to Right in the photo above: Purple Top White Globe (excellent for roasting); Scarlet Queen (beautiful salad turnip); Hakurei (gourmet salad turnip... mildest and most tender)

The greens are edible too! Some enjoy them in a salad (they are perhaps better with a warm dressing to slightly wilt / soften them). The greens are very good in a stir-fry (chop them and cook lightly) and in soups (especially pureed soups).

Here are some ways to enjoy turnips:

Eat them raw. Best: Hakurei. Second-best: Scarlet Queen. They taste pretty good in the garden, just-pulled and as-is! If you don't have that privilege, just wash them, slice them, and eat them with a dip or hummus. If they are sliced in rounds, they can be used like a 'cracker' to hold toppings. They are also good just sprinkled with salt and eaten.

Roast them. Best: Purple Top. Second-best: Scarlet Queen. Simply cut them in half or quarters; toss in melted butter / duck fat / lard or the oil of your choice; sprinkle with salt; roast until tender. Here are some good tips for roasting them at high heat to caramelize the outsides.

roasted turnips

Make a salad, such as this recipe. Best with Hakurei or Scarlet Queen.

Turnips with apples (cooked). I haven't made this before, but this looks like a good recipe.

Soup. There are some delicious turnip soup recipes around... they are creamy, mild, very tasty. Here is one example.

Other ways to enjoy them: Add to a stir-fry, stew, or boil / steam & mash. Roast them and top with shredded cheese for the last minute or two of cooking.

A storage tip: separate the greens and the roots to store them as they will keep better / longer that way. Simply cut off the greens just above the root, and keep them in separate bags or containers in the fridge.

What are your favourite turnip recipes?