A native son of Perm, Gourmandistan’s CSA czar, Pavel, is unafraid of winter—especially now that he has a greenhouse. We’ve enjoyed week after week of fresh produce from our cold weather farm share this year. Somewhat understandably, it’s been a bit heavy on the root vegetables. Fortunately, many of them have been creamy, crispy Hakurei turnips, a lovely variety that’s especially delightful when small.
Steve thinks they’re wonderful raw, sliced thin and sprinkled with a bit of sea salt, but Michelle prefers them cooked. This simple recipe from Andrea Reusing’s Cooking in the Moment is one of her favorite ways to enjoy them. It’s a good thing because Pavel, it seems, is a very good winter farmer. And we’re pretty sure the turnips will continue showing up through spring.
PAN-ROASTED HAKUREI TURNIPS WITH HONEY
(adapted, only slightly, from Andrea Reusing’s Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes)
- 1 bunch small Hakurei turnips (about 10), halved lengthwise
- 2 tsp. vegetable oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 TB honey
- Pinch of cayenne
- 1/2 TB water
Toss turnips with 1 tsp. oil, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
Combine honey, cayenne and water in a small bowl.
Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add remaining tsp. oil. Add turnips. Sauté for about 10 minutes, turning turnips frequently, until they are golden brown.
Add honey mixture to turnips and toss them for a few minutes until glazed and tender. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
Yes! This recipe is the best way to enjoy tiny turnips, though salt pickled with kombu is a close second.
Oh, that does sound good!
How absolutely beautiful: methinks I have only met the much older and tireder versions of these beautiful vegetables: have to ask around – perchance seeds are available to grow oneself!! Like your use of a tad of cayenne with the honey: one lives and learns!!!!
Oh, yes, should be seeds around. I have only seen these in CSA baskets and at farmers’ markets.
Oh, yes. I fancy a turnip myself, and I can see that these would be good. If you have a steady supply of turnips coming your way, save some for this recipe: http://m.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Japanese-Turnips-with-Miso-354957. It might be my favorite turnip preparation, and sometimes I add tofu and delicata squash to the braise as an exuse to have miso butter slathered over my entire meal.
I sent Steve out for white miso today (we only had some red). Can’t wait to try that. Thanks, Emmy!
Lovely. I like both the idea of raw, and that of cooked. And the addition of honey… that’s great!
That is a lovely little cookbook. I can’t wait for spring to have the author’s asparagus with butter and soy again.
These are probably the most beautiful turnips I’ve ever seen! What I really cannot get over, though, is that you’ve a CSA that has vegetables –of any kind — in Winter. Lucky for you to have found one with a greenhouse and lucky turnips to have found their way to your kitchen. 🙂
Oh thanks! Yeah, we are lucky that Pavel decided to do a winter CSA this year. And he’s just a mile or so from our house.
Very nice pics. Baby turnips are such a good vegetable, particularly when cooked with the added sweetness of the honey. Delicious.
Thanks, Roger! I admit that I used to hate turnips, but these little Japanese ones have really changed my point of view.
Turnips are so good, especially when they are nice and small like the ones you are getting.
I think turnips are a bit of an acquired taste. But these little Japanese ones are a great intro.
I’m with John on this–there’s a profound injustice in your access to these beautiful turnips while the rest of us shiver in the northeast with only the consolation of whatever’s in the root cellar. I’ve never heard of hakurei turnips–are they sweet? We have a regional variety called Macomber that are delicious raw. Sautéed small (would you eat any other kind?) turnips are great. Ken
They are sweet, mild, moist and crunchy, and even the bigger ones are tasty raw (though Michelle will never admit it).
I was surprised at how much I like hakureis. It’s funny that you got them in your CSA basket because that’s how I’ve always gotten them (and maybe seen them at a farmer’s market) but never in a grocery store. I’ve been having them raw, sliced thinly but I’m glad to have this recipe to cook them, especially when I (shhhh) have let them go a few days and they are not quite so crisp.
Aren’t they nice? I am a little turnip-overloaded at present, though, I must admit. Our ‘fridge is full of all sorts of varieties. If you have any ideas, do share!
Just picked up my first winter CSA box yesterday. I’ve got plenty of purple top turnips to work with. Do you think I could prepare them the same way, if I cut them into smaller chunks? I know nothing about turnips!
You can try it, as long as they’re small, thought they’re probably a bit stronger in taste than these are even so. To ease your way into turnips, you might first try using them as half the starch in things like mashed potatoes or potato soup.
Yummy, simple, perfect! You done did right by those ‘nips!
(and I don’t mean nipples)
I picked up a bunch of turnips at the farmer’s market yesterday but am unsure what to do with them. I’d like something easy-as it will be part of a weeknight meal, and I’ll most likely be serving them w/flank steak. My go-to for most vegetables, especially when I am unsure as to how best to cook them, is to roast them in an high temp oven w/olive oil, salt and pepper. Do turnips do well with this method? Any other suggestions or ideas? Thanks in advance.
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Michelle and Steve – Raw and slice with sea salt, or stove-roasted, sign me up. I could eat a whole pan of these home-grown candies. Best -Shanna
These are also called Japanese “salad turnips” – yes? This recipe sounds delicious. I only get them in the summer (CSA) and have always eaten them raw. I especially love the greens!
They are! Steve loves them. I’m a little turnip averse. 😃