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Post  Theresa on 5/16/2010, 8:38 am

This was the first year for turnips in our SFGs, the results are looking good so far!
Anyone else growing turnips?
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Post  new2this on 5/16/2010, 8:45 am

Wow, they look great (kinda pretty!).
You know....I've never even eaten a turnip! How will you prepare them?
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Post  Theresa on 5/16/2010, 9:07 am

We like to just peel them and eat them raw. I also peel, slice them, put them in a skillet add water, pinch of salt, pinch of sugar, add butter and just let them cook till tender. Some people like to mash them like potatoes.
The tops are good to eat, like spinach, but I've never tried that.
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Post  alouwomack on 5/16/2010, 9:21 am

I've never grown turnips but I'm thinking about trying this fall. My grandparents grew them and they are so yummy. Granny always mashed them like potatoes!

--Amber
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Post  chocolatepop on 5/16/2010, 10:34 am

I have some growing also! But mine are NO WHERE NEAR yours! I'm so excited!
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Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/16/2010, 11:16 am

Good for you! My turnips were a disappointment. I planted two squares, 9 to a square and they grew lovely tops. But I don't like turnip greens. I pulled the 6 inner ones as they were overwhelming a squash plant. Then the remaining ones began to grow a bit better. I ended up with 5 decent sized turnips out of 18 planted. This fall I'm going to try 5 per square and see if that helps grow larger roots.
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Post  Ray'ssfg on 5/17/2010, 12:48 am

@Theresa wrote:We like to just peel them and eat them raw. I also peel, slice them, put them in a skillet add water, pinch of salt, pinch of sugar, add butter and just let them cook till tender. Some people like to mash them like potatoes.
The tops are good to eat, like spinach, but I've never tried that.
first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_smile WOW eating turnips raw !!!!!
Can't think of anything worse as they are quite strong in flavour.
They are great cooked and mashed and very popular Down Under in soups.
My Dad used to grow them for our dairy cows and you could taste it in the milk - as kids that really put us off milk. Cows did like them and would eat the tops then chew away at the bulb underneath.
I have them growing for winter soup and they do well in the sfg.
first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_cheers Cheers Ray
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Post  boffer on 5/17/2010, 2:24 am

I planted some today. The picture on the seed package looks just like yours! (without the grid Smile )
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Post  PB on 5/17/2010, 7:44 am

I planted turnips. Mostly for the greens. They are too close together to have turnips. As the season gos along I may thin them out to see if they make turnips. I have never planted them this early. I always plant them in the fall. We eat them peeled, raw with a little salt, boiled till tender with a little butter, salt and a pinch of sugar. Southern staple!! The greens are simmered till tender. Add a pot of pintos, spring onions, a pone of cornbread, and of course some sweet iced tea!!
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Post  chocolatepop on 5/17/2010, 8:47 am

Teresa, when did you sow your seeds? I'm going to plant another box giving them more room this time.
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Post  ander217 on 5/17/2010, 10:50 am

A lot of us in the southern states with traditional gardens grow turnips as a fall crop because the insects don't attack them so much then. Aphids love them in spring. Once the summer crops are spent, a lot of people till under huge patches and sow them to turnips and mustard, and harvest the turnips through the winter and early spring.

I sometimes cook a pot of turnip greens with plenty of bacon or ham, and dice up a few turnips in it as well, but I really prefer turnip greens mixed with other greens - various combos of mustard, spinach, beet tops, poke salet, swiss chard, etc. My DH likes to sprinkle a few drops of pepper vinegar on his greens before eating, and some people add a pinch of sugar to their greens, but I never do. I don't mind the hint of bitterness.

I love raw turnips sprinkled with a little salt, or used as dippers on a relish tray. Once turnips grow very large they can get pithy and hot (as large radishes do, also), so use them for eating raw before they grow too large. (Maybe that's why you don't like raw turnips, Ray. Have you tried them when they're small, no more than three inches in diameter?)

Turnips are good roasted, too, alone or as part of a winter veggie medley. Dice them in one-inch dice, mix with any combination of chunks of carrots, rutabagas, celery root, brussels sprouts, parsnips, celery, etc., sprinkle with salt, toss with a little olive oil, and roast in a single layer on a sheet pan in a 400-degree oven for 30 min. to an hour, turning once or twice while cooking. Remove when tender, or leave longer until golden brown for a different flavor.

They can be boiled or steamed, too. Add a little bacon grease (or olive oil), salt, and sugar (optional) and cook until tender. Don't overcook or they will fall apart.
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Post  alouwomack on 5/17/2010, 11:06 am

You are all making me hungry for turnips!!!
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Post  chocolatepop on 5/17/2010, 1:47 pm

Yup, that is how I grew up on them also. I have collards going right now, and mustards too. will chop tops and roots for turnips and use some smoked turkey neck or ham hocks. I also use pepper apple cider vinegar.

Now I"M hungry
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Post  Ray'ssfg on 5/17/2010, 8:48 pm

first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin Thanks ander217 for the recipe tips for turnips. I will give it a try as mine are nearly ready. It is interesting how things are used in different areas and countries. Down Under turnips are mostly for soup and stock feed. Would never have thought of eating raw. I asked my Mum, who is 94 and loves veg's, did she ever eat them raw and she said never. She and I are going to give it a try together.
first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_cheers Cheers Ray
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Post  Ray'ssfg on 5/17/2010, 8:50 pm

first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_smile ander217, forgot to ask what are "rutabagas" ?
Never heard of them.
first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_cheers Cheers Ray
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Post  Megan on 5/17/2010, 8:54 pm

Rutabagas, at least the ones I've seen in grocery stores, are gold and purple instead of white and purple, and seem to be bigger. (That being said, I've read heirloom catalogs which advertise turnips which can grow to be huge.) Can't say I can tell a difference in taste, except maybe the rutabagas are milder? Could be my imagination.
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Post  alouwomack on 5/17/2010, 9:15 pm

Bambi and all the other deer love eating turnip greens; my stepdad plants plots of them to attract the deer to his hunting land.

Sad for the deer, but good for my mom if she ever wants turnips.
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Post  chocolatepop on 5/17/2010, 10:02 pm

rutabage is a cross between a turnip and cabbage. i think it is also called a sweede (or swede maybe?) I use it in a pasty, or mashed with potatoes. Basically can be used as either a potato or turnip.
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Post  Megan on 5/17/2010, 10:05 pm

Yup, it's a swede too. I have never heard of it being used as a potato, though! I have mashed both turnips and rutabagas to good effect (and used them in rotmos, potato pancakes, etc.) but often enough around here they go in the soup pot... yum! I want to hear about your pasty recipe.
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Post  bullfrogbabe on 5/17/2010, 10:11 pm

I grew some white/purple turnips last year that looked like the ones that started this thread. They reminded me of giant radishes but their flavour was milder. We ate them raw, chopped up in our salads. They can be started before frost here and are harvested early summer. If left too long they will bolt and get pithy in the summer heat. I never thought of eating them cooked, they are nice, cool, and crunchy when used raw in a salad but are sweeter/milder than radishes. They must be eaten soon after harvest, they don't store well for long.

The yellow turnips, also known as rutabagas, are planted after spring frosts are done, take all season to grow and are harvested in the fall. They can be waxed and stored in a cool place for use during the winter. We peel and cook them, eating them mashed or in cubes/strips while they are hot with butter. They can be sweet but are sometimes slightly bitter, but are not as strong as radishes or white turnips. A favourite at Thanksgiving dinner in our family.
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Post  chocolatepop on 5/17/2010, 10:58 pm

I don't really have a recipe, just kinda what I was taught Wink This is probably gonna get wordy Wink

You can get a premade roll pie crust or make your own, this is the recipe I use for my own crust:

3 cups flour
1/2 cup shortening
1 tsp in salt
6-7 Tablespoons ice cold water


Mix the flour and salt and then cut the shortening/lard into dry mix until it has the texture of cornmeal. For this you will need a pastry cutter or a fork, it is much easier with a pastry cutter. Add ice cold water tablespoon by table spoon until the mix is dough-like (it's best to err on the side of dryness, although if you get it too wet you can always add flour).

Crust is done!

Filling:
A whole gackle of root veggies.

I use potatoes, rutabaga, turnips, parsnips, onions, garlic (or garlic powder/salt) and carrots. peel and dice.

For the meat it depends, you can use 2 pounds of whatever you have. I usually use ground beef, turkey, venison or even pork. You can make a veggie version.

This is where I deviate.
I mix veggies with the meat. Add salt and pepper and other spices/herbs (think meatloaf).

Sometimes I cook all the "insides" and then put them in the crust (I do this for the ones I am going to freeze before cooking) or just put the "insides" raw inside the crust.

This recipe should make about 6 pasties. Divide dough into six, on a floured surface roll into 10-inch circle. put 1-1.5 cups of filling on one half of the circle, moisten the edges with water and fold the other side over like an envelope. I use a fork or my fingers to "crimp" or seal it and then put a couple slits in the top for ventilation. put it on a baking sheet in a preheated oven at 350 for 60 minutes or until the internal temperature is at least 160deg. You can also brush with milk or an eggwash to make it pretty and shiny.

I know a friend that cooks it for 30 min, then put a tsp of butter into each slit and bakes another 30 min.

Cool at least for 15 min.

I hope i didn't forget anything Wink
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Post  Ray'ssfg on 5/18/2010, 1:09 am

first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin The above answers are what I love about this site. first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_biggrin
Thankyou to everyone for your information and recipes.
first time for turnips, results looking good Icon_cheers Cheers Ray the humble old turnip has a new meaning.
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Post  BertieFox on 5/18/2010, 2:33 pm

I've been growing the Japanese turnips, Tokyo Cross, which are beautiful white, small turnips which look almost like mushrooms growing in each square. However, I've discovered they are very liable to splitting and a lot have been affected by cabbage root fly (I guess) with the roots turning a light brown colour.
A second variety, the French 'Long de Croissy' however, which produces a 'carrot' or cylindrical type root, doesn't produce splitting nor does it seem vulnerable to the disease. I am going to grow far more of the 'Croissy' type in future to see if they are really more resistant.
All of these white turnips are very fast growing, lack the bitter taste of the more traditional 'turnips' and are ideal for growing quickly in spring and early summer, and autumn of course.
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Post  miinva on 5/18/2010, 4:17 pm

I love turnips best when they're picked small, the size of a large egg, because the flavor seems much more mild. I've seen rutabagas called swedish turnips and I love them! I think their flavor is much more mild than most turnips and I prefer rutabagas to turnips by far (unless we're talking about the little turnips, in which case they're almost even!).

We love mashed turnips or rutabagas!
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Post  ander217 on 5/18/2010, 7:22 pm

Ray, be sure and let us know how you like your first taste of raw turnip. first time for turnips, results looking good Affraid
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