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Turnip Cooking Tips

Turnips battered and baked1
Turnips battered and baked
Battered and baked turnips

Let turnips surprise you. They may not be wildly popular but they can be tasty.

Here are a few suggestions for serving turnips:

• Serve slices of raw young turnips with olives and cherry tomatoes to make a simple appetizer.

• Shave raw turnips, crisp them in iced water, sprinkle with salt, and serve as you would radishes on an appetizer tray.

• Thin slice turnips and serve like chips with dip.

• Grate raw turnips with cabbage, carrots, and onion and toss with mustard vinaigrette.

• Cook small turnips and their greens separately until tender then serve with crumbled bacon on top.

• Bake young turnips with grated cheese or served with a cream or Mornay sauce.

• Stir-fry shredded turnips with scallions and other vegetables.

• Mash cooked turnips like you would potatoes; serve like potatoes or mash them with potatoes.

• For scalloped turnips: layer thin turnip slices with sliced onion; place butter on each layer and sprinkle with flour and salt. Pour in a cup of beef broth and bake for 90 minutes at 350°F.

• Dice raw turnips into ¼-inch cubes; cook in a heavy saucepan with tight-fitting cover for 10 to 15 minutes until tender cooking in butter and water—2 tablespoons of butter and 4 or water to 2 cups of diced turnips. Salt and add sugar to smooth any bitter taste.

• For creamed turnips, follow the steps above with the further step of adding cream blended with a little flour and a sprinkling of chopped chives and parsley.

• Serve creamed or sour-creamed turnips with chopped beef, steak, baked ham, or roasted turkey.

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. has more than 10 million visitors each year.

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