Turnip Soup

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Alexander
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Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 10:54 AM
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When I was a child, my mother used to make a very simple, but wonderful turnip soup - just turnips, pork, onions, water, salt, pepper, fresh thyme, and some turnip greens cut in 2 inch lengths, adding a little bitter flavor to contrast with the sweetness of the pork and other ingredients. Even knowing the ingredients, I've never been able to duplicate it. Those I've broached the subject with all seem to recoil in horror at the thought of such a soup. Certainly it's one of the few soups I know that includes pork. Have any of the other soup-roadies ever encountered such a soup?

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 11:09 AM
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Typing in Turnip Soup on Google will get you about 38,000 turnip soup entries. One of them might be what you're looking for.

Grampy
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 11:11 AM
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If you think of a turnip as a potato with an attitude, you will be on the right track. I would sauté onions and pancetta in a little olive oil. Add diced turnips and thyme and sauté another few minutes. Then add stock of your preference, salt and pepper to taste, and cook until turnips are just tender. Then add greens until tender. Adjust seasonings. That would work for me. You might want to do a 3 to 1 ratio of turnip to potato, though.

lleechef
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 12:06 PM
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Again, Grampy, you're right on the money, I'd do the same thing.

Other uses for the lowly turnip (which I LOVE): in corned beef and cabbage, in lamb couscous, "turned" and glazed in butter and a little sugar with roast duck.

Alexander
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 12:23 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Grampy

If you think of a turnip as a potato with an attitude, you will be on the right track. I would sauté onions and pancetta in a little olive oil. Add diced turnips and thyme and sauté another few minutes. Then add stock of your preference, salt and pepper to taste, and cook until turnips are just tender. Then add greens until tender. Adjust seasonings. That would work for me. You might want to do a 3 to 1 ratio of turnip to potato, though.


Pancetta wasn't readily available in Lowcountry SC in the 1930's and '40's, and the only solids in our soup were onion, turnip (cut in chunks), pork, and a moderate number of cut turnip greens for a slightly bitter contrast to offset the sweetness of the other ingredients. Certainly there were no potatoes in it; that was rice country, and potatoes were not really a staple. Soups in the SC lowcountry are generally eaten with rice in them.

As mentioned by a poster above, there are countless recipes for turnip soup (many simply copied from each other). But none have the simplicity and balanced flavors of what I remember and am trying to duplicate. I've come pretty close, but not quite gotten there. I'm beginning to think that it may be the flavor of the pork available now, or even the breeds (we raised our own, as we also did with onions and turnips).

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 12:44 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by lleechef

Again, Grampy, you're right on the money, I'd do the same thing.

Other uses for the lowly turnip (which I LOVE): in corned beef and cabbage, in lamb couscous, "turned" and glazed in butter and a little sugar with roast duck.

Turned? Turned? What are you, some sort of chef or something?

lleechef
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 12:55 PM
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Well......um........yeah........kinda......

To be properly "turned" it must have 7 sides. Not 6, not 8. And 9 is just right out.

Then along with the "turned" turnips you want to "turn" some carrots and since they cook at relatively the same time, put the two in water, just below covering them, a good pat of butter and about 1T sugar. Proceed to boil uncovered. When the water has evaporated the butter and sugar will kick in and glaze.

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 1:41 PM
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When the CIA was located in New Haven I used to deliver meat there for my father's company. I'd often spend hours learning stuff. It was a lot less formal then, and I enjoyed myself. Except this one afternoon when I was being taught to turn potatoes. Let's see, I believe it was l'anglais. Would that be right? Anyway, many years later I decided to turn potatoes and carrots for a stew. Unfortunately, my wife liked it so much she insisted I do it for every stew.

lleechef
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 2:07 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Michael Hoffman

When the CIA was located in New Haven I used to deliver meat there for my father's company. I'd often spend hours learning stuff. It was a lot less formal then, and I enjoyed myself. Except this one afternoon when I was being taught to turn potatoes. Let's see, I believe it was l'anglais. Would that be right? Anyway, many years later I decided to turn potatoes and carrots for a stew. Unfortunately, my wife liked it so much she insisted I do it for every stew.

L'anglais must be 5 cm long and 2.5 cm thick. Trust me. Those French chefs are picky!

When I came back from France I was "turning" everything and it drove my Mother nuts. "You're wasting so much!" Yes, but they all have to be properly "turned", just sooooo, 7 sides.

Michael Hoffman
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 2:26 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by lleechef

quote:
Originally posted by Michael Hoffman

When the CIA was located in New Haven I used to deliver meat there for my father's company. I'd often spend hours learning stuff. It was a lot less formal then, and I enjoyed myself. Except this one afternoon when I was being taught to turn potatoes. Let's see, I believe it was l'anglais. Would that be right? Anyway, many years later I decided to turn potatoes and carrots for a stew. Unfortunately, my wife liked it so much she insisted I do it for every stew.

L'anglais must be 5 cm long and 2.5 cm thick. Trust me. Those French chefs are picky!

When I came back from France I was "turning" everything and it drove my Mother nuts. "You're wasting so much!" Yes, but they all have to be properly "turned", just sooooo, 7 sides.


rumbelly
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RE: Turnip Soup - Mon, 03/1/04 2:47 PM
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A yes! Turning veg for long periods of time and some guy with the big hat comes and asks what it is you are doing. "Turning the vegetables as requested chef!!" only to be told they were improperly sized or didn't have the requisite amount of sides or you were too slow etc. Only to scrape the whole mess into the stockpot or the trash. As a result I make Pommes Chateaux with six sides.

howard8
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RE: Turnip Soup - Tue, 04/13/04 10:35 AM
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I just made a truly delicious turnip soup.
Having left over stock from a corned beef, I cubed four medium sized white turnips and one large white potato. When they were cooked through, I blended them and added half a cup of heavy cream to approximately two quarts of soup. Also added two dried hot chiles. The result was a soup with a light turnip taste and some nice spice and heat from the chiles. The soup was fresh tasting and just the right consistency without the addition of any reux or thickeners.
I will definetly do this again with probably a chicken stock.

Emerald
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RE: Turnip Soup - Fri, 04/30/04 11:29 PM
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While living in NYC years ago I was lucky enough to try a soup called Caldo Gallego which contained turnip greens, turnip, northern beans, garlic, and a wonderful slightly sour chorizo I've never found anywhere else but made once from a cookbook I've never run across again.

Cakes
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RE: Turnip Soup - Sat, 05/1/04 10:23 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by Emerald

While living in NYC years ago I was lucky enough to try a soup called Caldo Gallego which contained turnip greens, turnip, northern beans, garlic, and a wonderful slightly sour chorizo I've never found anywhere else but made once from a cookbook I've never run across again.


Emerald,

If you do some research on the web, you will find that Caldo Gallego is a fits-all Spanish term, caldo means pot. Our term for it would be refrigerator soup. The Cuban resturant around the corner from me has one that is wonderful. No turnips, kale and beans and potatoes, some ham.

I found a recipe that used pastrami but it was a little rich. Never tried again.

Cakes