Relish Your Turnips

Along with classes, I’ve had the vastly entertaining part-time job of assuming the role of Farmers’ Market Manager for our school. It’s difficult to decide exactly which part of the deal makes its way into my favorites category:

Getting to know local farmers and purveyors of artisanal food products (like fine yoghurt and goat cheese)… meeting the well over a thousand market shoppers we have each week in Boulder… decorating the bi-fold chalkboard with ChalkInk markers and my ‘recipe of the week’… or actually creating and testing the recipe attempting to use as many local and seasonal ingredients as I can.

There is a bit of an artsy dork hiding- arguably not well- inside me, and you can’t possibly imagine how fun it is to decorate the chalk board each week! I remember as a teenager wanting to be ‘that guy’ who decorates sidewalk signs for cafés or paints holiday themes on store windows. Fake snow and all. Happy sigh~

But this week playing around in the kitchen with some surprisingly sweet fresh turnips has taken the cake. Or at least some crackers or chips. Or maybe even your favorite sandwich. This refreshingly earthy and sweet, not to mention guilt-free, turnip relish tastes exactly like spring and summer should.

The following recipe incorporates several Colorado products which I’d love for you to explore if you’re even remotely local. But for those incredibly loyal readers from around the globe (I truly do appreciate you!) here are a few descriptions to help you find a similar product hopefully a bit closer to home.

Haystack Queso de Mano Goat Cheese is a raw milk, aged firm cheese with a robust flavor that serves as a fine compliment to the sweet notes of the turnips

 

Noosa Honey Yoghurt is a lightly sweetened cow’s milk yoghurt made with Colorado honey and grass fed, happily roaming Colorado cows~ another happy sigh

 

Japanese sweet white turnips, also known as salad turnips, are literally sweet enough to be eaten like an apple. I did, actually. And of course, keep the greens for a quick sauté or a slow, Southern-style simmer.

Sweet Turnip Relish

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb (about 6 large or 9 small) sweet white turnips coarsely chopped, greens removed
  • 1 cup Haystack Queso de Mano goat cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup Noosa Honey Yoghurt
  • juice from half a lemon
  • 1 Tbs fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 pinches of salt, or to taste

Method:

Combine all ingredients except salt in a food processor or blender and pulse until smooth. Season with salt to taste. Enjoy as a refreshing summer spread for crackers and chips, or as a condiment for burgers and sandwiches.

Yield: 2 cups (vegetarian, gluten free, nut free)

Dose of Humor & Candied Cashews

It’s infrequent that I attempt to delve into humor- or anything too poignantly personal- as the Terrified Tastebud. I don’t have a particularly profound reason. And I don’t have cable television at the moment, but I’m still pretty positive there’s a reality show (or fifty) out there that have much higher entertainment potential than my daily musings.

So breathe a sigh of relief… I’ll only dip my toes gingerly into humor today. And, of course, it has EVERYTHING to do with FOOD! You can even have some darn good cashews for snacking as you laugh if you have the very short list of ingredients and a few spare minutes. Feel free to jump now to SweetSourMoments‘ perfect Honey Sesame Roasted Cashew recipe and skip the rest of the dialogue. I promise I won’t mind a bit. Shoot… I won’t even know ;).

It’s been a little over a year that I’ve been a single adult, and the realization has struck me that sharing food from my kitchen has somehow become incredibly complicated. I’m not really sure how this happened.

I love to bake and cook (usually in that order) and generally end up in the kitchen when I’m sad or happy or stressed or excited or it’s raining and I can’t play outside. So, yes. Often. And unfortunately I lack a healthy serving of self control when it comes to sweets particularly. So I give food away. To neighbors. Coworkers. Sometimes random places where I do business. I love it.

Usually people are pretty glad to see me coming with a warm treat. And that’s still primarily the case. Most of my neighbors are happily paired couples and sharing with them is risk-free. Perfect!

But the entertaining twist has become apparent with single men. Of all ages much to my surprise. One of my neighbors is a young guy in his mid-twenties I’m guessing, and he seems to be hanging in a post-fraternity stage of life. That’s ok by me. As long as he eats; which he does. He’s had fresh bread stuffed in his mailbox, cookies, pies (not in the mailbox), candies… but I think it’s taken a full six months for him to realize I’m not the crazy condo lady, a decade his senior, trying to score a date. Really?

The other end of the spectrum was a gentleman at least twenty years my senior who misinterpreted my cookies. After a couple dinners that I thought were friendly gestures, I realized I’d given quite the wrong idea. Frick.

Just in the last week I’m fairly certain I’ve scared away a new friend- my age this time- by sharing one of my kitchen creation staples. Oops. He mentioned he ate this particular item almost everyday, so I figured he’s pretty close to an expert, right? I was curious how my own version compared to what he buys locally.

It felt innocent to me, but I’m just getting used to this new food-sharing phenomenon. My Maman always said “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” but now I’m wondering how to localize only to the stomach. Just stomach for now would be brilliant. Maybe she’ll have some words of wisdom here. Or perhaps you will? Have you ever scared someone with food?

Maybe I should write disclaimers to accompany the treats…

But enough of the food fear… if these little pics of cashews I made this afternoon have you tempted, check out the recipe here by SweetSourMoments. Her instructions are absolutely spot on. I used a silicone baking mat instead of foil to minimize stickiness, and if you’re an I-like-it-hot person, feel free to add a little cayenne.

And I just can’t help myself, but… tied up in a cute little bag they’d be a perfect little food share with a neighbor. Disclaimer attached~