Monday, February 18, 2013

ChezCindy: Winter Root Vegetables - Turnips!

Up until a few weeks ago, I don't think I had ever eaten a turnip.  To be really honest, only in the last few years have I understood which vegetable was a turnip and which were parsnips.  Parsnips look like carrots and turnips are round, purple and white in color.  Parsnips are cousins to carrots and turnips are in the same family as radishes. 

Winter brings on the opportunity or challenge to try different seasonal vegetables.  Food magazines and newspaper articles feature recipes that inspire to go beyond carrots.  Thus, my inspiration to try roasted turnips.  To my great surprise, the texture was creamy and the flavor sweet.  I decided to partner them with sliced butternut squash, cut from the long neck of the squash, roasted with fresh thyme. 

Consider using turnips when making a vegetable soup or beef stew. Simply peel, cut into small cubes, and add as you would potatoes and carrots.  Purchase smaller turnips as opposed to those larger in size, as the large older turnips are hotter in taste. 

Roasted Turnips and Butternut Squash with Fresh Thyme
1-pound turnips
1-pound butternut squash
4-5 fresh thyme sprigs
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt & ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
Peel the turnips and squash.  Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices.  Place the sliced vegetables and thyme sprigs into a medium bowl.  Add the olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Toss to coat the sliced vegetables. 

Place the sliced vegetables onto a heavy baking sheet, laying them in a single layer.  Sprinkle the thyme sprigs over the slices.  Place baking tray in the oven, roasting for about 20 minutes.  Halfway through roasting time, turn over each slice to brown the other side.  Remove from oven.  Serve warm. 

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