In praise of hakurei salad turnips

Here’s something I never expected to say: I love these turnips.  I’m the kind of person who eats turnips because I know they’re good for me and I know they grow well here.  I don’t think I would normally choose to eat turnips if I didn’t have to.  These?  I WOULD choose to eat them on purpose – not just because they were in my CSA bag.  So, given the reputation of the poor turnip, if you’ve turned up your nose at turnips so far, be sure to give these a try this spring.  

FYI, my four-year-old prefers these raw.  They taste like mild radishes this way and are easy to eat.  Wash well, peel, slice, and use them with your (or your kid’s) favorite dip or sauce.  Or slice them very finely and serve them in a salad.

OR roast them, which is how I prefer them.  We peeled and cut ours into <1″ chunks and tossed them in olive oil, salt, a few pinches of brown or coconut sugar (or maple syrup), and herbs (like herbes de Provence, thyme, sage, and/or a little rosemary).  The sugar was actually an important part because these turnips are SO mild that they needed the sugar and salt to help their delicate flavors stand up to cooking.  We tried roasting them without sugar the first time and there just wasn’t much to them.  But you could certainly do without.  The key either way is to not overcook them.  They don’t need nearly as long as other root vegetables.  We cooked them at 400 degrees for about a half hour.