We typically have two kinds of turnips in CSA shares in our region. The Japanese Salad turnip or Hakurei Turnip, and the purple or greenish topped turnip.
The Hakurei Turnips rarely need peeling and have creamy white flesh that is sweet, tender and crisp. The greens are often still attached, especially early in the season. The greens are also delicious and tender and should be used soon after harvest for best flavor. They don’t keep as well as the roots.
Both kinds of turnips are delicious simply sautéed until tender in a little olive oil or butter. They are delicious added, grated raw to slaws, or diced to stir fries or curries.
Techniques and complementary ingredients for Hakurei (Salad) Turnips:
- As the name conveys this turnip is often used raw, in salads
- It is delicious pickled
- It takes well to a quick sauté or roasting
- Combine with its greens in a soup or stir fry
- Green onions
- Carrots (grated or julienned in salads)
- Sesame oil/Seeds
- Soy sauce
- Green curry paste
The purple topped turnip is typically harvested in late fall and shows up throughout the winter. It does need peeling but is also sweet and crisp but a bit firmer than the Hakurei. It is good both raw and cooked.
Techniques and complementary ingredients for Purple Topped Turnips:
- These turnips are particularly good braised with miso and butter (recipe below)
- They are delicious in a soup or stir fries
- Mashed with a bit of mutter and nutmeg (combined with rutabagas or other roots)
- Sesame seeds/oil
Dishes that include turnips: