Friday, April 2, 2010

Pan-Fried Turnips

Turnips

Russian Kale - great sauteed
Farmer John (above) looking dapper at market today with
Sabrina, whose helping get the farm ready for visitors...


Shareholder Kress and vollie Jed at the pick-up today

Chrysanthemum leaves - see Tuesday,
March 23 post for recipe with sesame oil.

Here's what Farmer John had for us at the Silver Lake pick-up this week:

Turnips
Red and golden beets
Broccoli (with its tasty leaf)
Russian kale
Arugula
Adolescent red and green romaine
Butter lettuce
Chrysanthemum greens
Green garlic
Cilantro
Dill

Roasting turnips is such a snap it's easy to forget that there are many other ways to prepare this delicious vegetable. Pan-frying is about as easy as roasting and can produce a lovely crisp and brown exterior full of complex flavors.

Start by removing the greens. Compost them or save them for another use. Peel the turnips, but don't be daunted by their pungent aroma when raw. Turnips are mild and delicately flavored once cooked. Cut the turnips into bite-sized pieces.

Heat 1 T olive oil in a heavy skillet with a cover. I like to use a cast iron pan with a glass cover that fits snugly. Add the turnips and season with salt and pepper to taste. Toss to coat lightly with the oil and cook over medium heat, stirring once or twice, until the turnips well-browned and soft, about 10-20 minutes depending on the size of the pieces.

Three small turnips will make a small side dish for two people. However, since turnips keep so well in the fridge, you might still have your turnips from two weeks ago, so go ahead and double this recipe.

If you have only three turnips, you can expand this recipe by combining the turnips with potatoes. I like to use baby Yukon Golds, Fingerlings, and/or Peruvian Blues. Use an equal amount of potatoes, cut them about the same size (no need to peel the potatoes), and put the potatoes on a few minutes before the turnips because they take a little longer to cook.

If you happened to pick-up a couple of mandarin oranges a share-holder brought in today, consider topping your pan-fried turnips with a little finely grated mandarin orange zest. Or snip a little of Farmer John's fresh dill over your turnips before serving.

Enjoy!

Shelley

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