Welcome to austinagrodolce … My family and I garden with more intention and enthusiasm than allocated budget or overall design plan. It shows. Wildlife populations don't seem to notice our lack of cohesive design, they just like the native plants here. It seems by growing local we've thrown out a welcome mat. Occasionally, we're surprised at who (and what) shows up.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

If at first you don't succeed

Fry, fry again!

Or at least, that is how I imagine Paula Deen would approach the situation.

However, (I pretend) I am more concerned about calories and fats, so when my husband declared the other night that he was "not a fan" of the herbed oven roasted turnips (mixed in with organic russets, new, and an organic sweet potato), I was determined to find another way to prepare turnips that came in this week's CSA basket from David and Katie Pitre of Tecolote Farms.

It wasn't the turnip's fault, I reasoned.  I just hadn't found quite the right way to prepare them to enhance their turnipy goodness in a way that would hit my husband's palate in just the right spot.

Enter Scalloped Turnips, stage right.

Now, while I would PRETEND to be concerned about frying, let's be realistic for a moment, yes?  When I am preparing a scalloped turnip casserole, once you figure up the butter and heavy cream called for in the recipe, I think the "virtues" of prepping a vegetable this way over frying are, well, as Joey would put it from the old TV series, a "moo point".

But I didn't find a recipe for fried turnips - I found one for scalloped turnips.  

And if there is something I know my husband IS a fan of, it is scalloped potatoes.  So I gave this a whirl.

As luck would have it, I didn't have quiiiite enough turnips to reproduce the recipe precisely, so I had to wing it a little bit with reducing the ingredients.  The results were pretty durned delicious, and as I am an enthusiastic rather than expert cook, I'd say that means this recipe just might be "goof proof".  

Here's the original recipe, minus my substituting what I had on hand (scallions for onions) and reducing the amounts to accommodate the roughly 2 1/2 cups peeled, sliced turnips from my basket.  I got this from Simply Recipes:

Scalloped Turnips
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup thinly sliced onions
4 cups peeled, sliced turnips
2 tbsp flour
1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cream

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a 1 quart casserole.  Melt 1 tbsp butter and lightly sauté onions until just wilted.

2.  Layer a third of the sliced turnips in the casserole dish; top with a third of the onion; sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of flour, 1/3 teaspoon of salt, and one grind of pepper; pat with dollops from 1 tablespoon of butter.  Repeat this layering twice.

3.  Mix milk and cream together and pour over the turnips.  Cover and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, then remove cover and bake for another 30-45 minutes until turnips are tender and liquid is bubbly and top is nicely browned.

Serves 4.

My notes:  As mentioned above, I only had 2 1/2 cups turnips and I am dubious that 4 full cups and the full amounts of liquids as noted will not fill a 1 quart casserole over full.  I used a 1 quart casserole dish and the reduced recipe I prepared filled it more than 3/4 full.  I think I might try this in a 1 1/2 quart casserole if I had the entire shebang's worth of turnips, just to be safe and to prevent nasty boil overs (because my oven is soooooo clean....)

I would also suggest that a full recipe might serve 5-6 folks due to how very rich this turns out to be.  Not that I am judging anybody for eating a lot of rich food, far from it.  Before I put the serving spoon in the dishwasher tonight I licked it clean.  REALLY clean.  But I do think this will give you more than 4 servings unless you were serving it as a main course.

Other than that I have to suggest you try this one out if you are not already completely sold on turnips as God's gift to root vegetable lovers.  This has converted my husband from "not a fan" to "anytime you want to serve this, feel free".  

Now, if it were only calorie free....oh well.  Can't have everything.  


Elise said...

Awesome! So glad you like the recipe. It's one of our favorites. Turnips have never tasted this good.


Simply Recipes

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