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Turnip Salad

Friday, April 24, 2015

After Orthodox Easter gluttony with Kulichi and Paskha, my body is longing for something light and fresh, like this quick and simple turnip salad. It seems that turnips are ignored as food by many because I often find them wilting on store shelves. People seem to under appreciate  this milder alternative to more pungent red radishes that are the same Cruciferae plant family. Turnip is a good source of vitamin C, and it's just plain tasty when properly prepared. This salad is another spring impromptu of mine and takes just 10 minutes to make. Nice. :)

What you need:
1 medium turnip (about 3" wide), peeled and finely grated
2-3 sprigs of green onions, finely cut
1 clove of garlic, finely grated or minced
2-3 tsp of mayonnaise
Lemon zest (optional)
Makes two portions
Time: 10 minutes

Stir all ingredients until evenly mixed together - eat immediately after that. This is all about the "method"! Don't you just love it?
Enjoy this refreshing turnip salad and never again pass this vegetable in a grocery store - just toss a couple in your cart.

Unfortunately, in American markets (at least here in New England) there is no yellow turnip (do not confuse it with rutabaga!). This yellow variety is sweeter and juicier than turnip we spoke about today. It could be munched on as is - it does not need any special preparations. It's very common among Russians to grow  yellow turnip in their vegetable gardens. In my childhood, it was a special summer pleasure to gnaw on a baby turnip that was just pulled out of the dirt, rinsed and ready to burst out with sweet juices on your teeth...
Yellow turnip was so popular in Russia that a famous children's folk fairy tale called Repka (A Giant Turnip) was based on growing this vegetable. Each Russian child knows this exciting tale by 2 years of age.