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In Season: Turnips

The spicy root vegetable takes a lead role on The Farm House's farm-driven menu.

Written By:  Erin B. Murray

Photographers:  Jen McDonald

This month, you’ll find turnips taking a lead role on chef Trey Cioccias farm-driven menu—the spicy root vegetable will continue to make an appearance until we get a deep freeze. Cioccia prefers the small, white Hakurei variety.

“We base our entire menu around vegetables,” Cioccia says of his downtown restaurant, The Farm House. “They’re the star of the show for us, even in the wintertime.”

He’s been known to shave them, pickle them, and braise them in beef fat for a luxurious side dish. In the recipe below, he cooks them until they are barely soft, stems and all, and douses them in a light butter sauce. “You can also take out the vinegar in this version and add some sugar—turnips love a little sweetness,” he adds.

Butter-Poached Turnips

Courtesy of chef Trey Cioccia, The Farm House
Serves 4, as a side dish

4 bunches Hakurei turnips, stems intact
½ cup butter
¼ cup smoked vinegar
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
½ tablespoon black pepper

In a pot, add all ingredients, and cover with water. Simmer for 15 minutes, until turnips are soft. Using a slotted spoon, remove turnips from the pot, and reserve on a plate. Continue simmering liquid, until reduced by three quarters. Add the turnips back to pot, coating them with the reduction. Serve warm.

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