Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Roasted Tokyo Turnips


We’ve had a heat wave the past few weeks, which is a pretty wimpy heat wave at that, but I still didn’t want to turn on my oven. My farm box didn’t cooperate, however, as it was chock full of beets and large turnips and I still had a handful of new potatoes left over from a few boxes ago. Finally, we had a classic coastal grey day and I jumped at the chance and threw all my vegetables in the oven. Well, not ‘threw’, but you know… 

I figure I might as well roast several different vegetables while I’m at it. The last time I received a bunch of Tokyo turnips they were radish size and tasted great sliced in salads raw. As you’d expect, the turnips were larger a few weeks later so I thought I’d quarter them lengthwise, toss them with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast them. I really like how they turned out and hopefully you will too… Oh, and I also roasted some purple carrots with the potatoes, the recipe for turnips below also works well for carrots and potatoes. Did you know purple carrots have orange centers?? Fun!

One quick note: If you love oven roasted veggies but hate waiting 1++ hours for them to cook for dinner try this.
If you make roasted vegetables in advance, let them cool all the way and store them in your fridge. (Not novel information but keep reading) I like to re-heat the vegetables without the microwave if it can be avoided but I use whatever cooking technique I'm using the night of to re-heat the vegetables. For instance, if I'm pan frying a ribeye steak for dinner I'll reheat the oven roasted veggies in that pan while the steak is out and resting so they get to hang out with the glorious butter/pepper pan juices from cooking the steak. Or, throw them on the grill loosely wrapped in foil (with a vent) so they don't get soggy. Yes, the roasted vegetables are better the night you roast them, but leftovers don't have to be doomed to the microwave.

Roasted Tokyo Turnips

One bunch of Tokyo beets, any size
Olive oil
Kosher Salt
Freshly ground pepper

- Set oven to 400˚F. Wash the turnips and trim the greens so that 2 inches or so remain attached to the turnip. Save the greens for another use or discard. Depending on the size of the turnips you can leave them whole, halve them, or quarter them lengthwise so that each piece of turnip has some of its greens still attached.

- Place the turnips in a 9x13 pyrex dish, drizzle with olive oil, and season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast, turning and shaking the turnips occasionally, until the turnips are tender and can be easily pierced with a fork, about 45 minutes to an 1.5 hours depending on the size of the turnips.

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