Turnips & Carrots: Irish as it gets

Last year, I was out of ideas for vegetables, and blegged a few recipes.

Then Gabriel Malor at Ace got into the mix and we had a lot of fun with folks exchanging recipes. Let’s try that again!

This year Gabriel is giving us another one for the sweet tooth, and I’ve already put the ingredients on my list. Check out his Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip! It’s a dessert I think my littlest nieces will love (it’s fun to dip cookies!) and it’s nutritious, too. Got yer Beta-Carotene, yer protein, dairy…good stuff!

Here is one if you’re reading this at work and have no idea what to bring tomorrow. You stop off at the store, pick up a few things and you’re off and running:


2 lbs carrots
2 lbs turnips (or rutabagas)
light cream
brown sugar (optional)

Peel the carrots and slice them any way you please – you’re going to boil the hell out of them, anyway.

Peel the turnip and do the same. DO NOT try to peel the turnip with a veggie peeler, you’ll just break your hand. Take a sharp knife and carefully cut the rind away. Carefully is the operative word. I still have a scar on my left hand from the slippery knife.

Boil, boil, boil the veggies until the turnips are soft.

Drain water (try to catch the drainage into a pot and then freeze it; it’s a wonderful veggie broth base for soup)

Using a mixer (or by hand if you are a glutton for punishment) mash veggies, adding butter, salt, pepper and a little light cream, or milk, to taste. Since these are not “thick” veggies, you don’t want to add too much liquid, or the whole thing gets watery.

The brown sugar is totally optional. If you add it, be sparing – use 1/4 of a cup or so – it gives a sort of glaze to the whole affair, but it’s not essential.

This is a delicious way to sweeten turnips, and it is a very “Irish” sort of dish. I particularly like it when serving fresh ham, but it’s a staple on our Thanksgiving table, too!

Related: Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Feel free to leave your own veggie recipes in the comments section!

And pray your Thanksgiving is not like this one

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • scmommy

    A personal favorite here in SC – Squash Stuffing!

    2 lbs squash – cook tender & drain
    1 stick butter – melted
    1 small carton sour cream
    1 can cream of chicken soup
    1 cup grated carrtos
    1 chopped medium onion
    2 Tbl chopped bell pepper
    1 small pakage Pepperidge Farm Stuffing
    Salt & pepper to taste
    Mix all ingredients. Save a little stuffing to sprinkle on top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

  • http://ace.mu.nu Gabriel Malor

    Squash stuffing! Yum!

    See, my failing is that I’m looking for simple. Hence, NO BAKING of any bread or pastry. I totally could do the squash stuffing, though.

  • Libby

    I highly recommend the Butternut Squash Apple, Leek & Potato Gratin w/Cheddar Crust over at FineCooking.com – a lot of veggie chopping but it’s seriously yummy.
    And you didn’t ask for desserts, but I’m making an apple spice cake served w/caramel sauce & ice cream I found on Martha Stewart’s site – a reader’s recipe submission. I made this for my mom’s b-day a few weeks ago, and after declaring it the “best cake ever” she insisted I make it for Thanksgiving.

  • http://fineoldfamly.blogspot.com Sally Thomas

    My Thanksgiving Green Vegetable Offering Two Years Ago

    (did I do the link right? I hope I didn’t mess it up)

    Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

    [Perfect! Happy Thanksgiving! -admin]

  • http://upfromtheslime.blogspot.com stuiec

    I am thinking that substituting parsnips for the turnips might be even better (and safer, peeling-wise).

  • scmommy

    Gabriel – this is soooo easy. The hardest part is grating the carrots.

    PS – I just notice that I spelled carrots wrong. Really, we can spell down here in the south!

    Have a safe and blessed Thanksgiving everyone!

  • ecb

    I’m so glad to see someone realizing the incredible yumminess of yellow turnips (bah to the term rutabaga!). I love them mashed with just a bit of salt and pepper and butter and a dollop of bacon fat. And yes I’m Irish too!

  • http://fineoldfamly.blogspot.com Sally Thomas

    Mmm, parsnips. We’re having those, roasted. I had to explain to the grocery cashier last night what they were.

    Also, I don’t want to blow my own bloggy horn too much here, but the other day my husband brought home some pumpkin recipes from the North Carolina Agricultural Extension, and while I haven’t tried them, I did reproduce them, with some annotations, here. The soup looked all right; not quite as tempted to try the dip.

  • Joe Odegaard

    The Irish call carrots “underground honey”.

  • http://www.protocatholic.blogspot.com Gretchen

    Oh gosh, this is a staple dish on our holiday table! Nothing but lots of butter and a dash of nutmeg, though. And yeah, you have to boil the heck out of those rutabagas and carrots.

  • 11B40


    Turnips & Carrots: Irish as it gets – the hell it is.

    Now turnips and smashed potatoes fried in some butter – that’s Oyrish.

    And what about potato stuffing, huh, huh.

    Happy Thankies to all.

  • scmommy

    In case you are looking for something sweet (just made 2 batches – hubby has already finished off 1)

    Glazed Pecans

    1/2 cup brown sugar

    2 Tbl OJ

    2 cups pecans

    Mix all in a 10 x 14 dish, cook for 6 -8 minutes in the microwave, stirring every 2 minutes till bubbly and brown. Spread on a buttered cookie sheet till cool.

  • Carolyn

    Peel and slice parsnips into a saucepan with a little water. Start to simmer, covered. Peel and slice carrots (about 2 or 3 times the volume of parsnips). When the parsnips have cooked for a few minutes, add the carrots. Watch that the water doesn’t completely evaporate.

    Cook until the carrots are tender but not mushy. Remove lid from pan and allow remaining water to evaporate. Add a hunk of butter, a little salt and fresh-ground pepper and stir. The parsnips should fall apart, covering the firmer carrots.


  • dry valleys

    Some food that isn’t Irish! (But will ward off the cold if you can get some, by the looks of it!)

    Eat The Seasons (USA/Canada)

    Happy Thanksgiving, readers!

  • Pingback: Jules Crittenden » Things To Be Thankful For

  • kate camp

    We made the Pioneer Woman’s roasted acorn squash and cranberry sauce and they were tremendous. Everyone loved them and asked that they become part of our ‘regulars’.

  • http://caitesdayatthebeach.blogspot.com caite

    not to argue with 11B40…which of course I am ;-) …but having been to Ireland many, many times and eaten at many, many an Irish table, this is a dish you will always see. Fried in butter no…big nob of butter on top, absolutely!

  • 11B40

    Greetings: especially “caite”

    You’re absolutely right, caite. I was thinking of the leftovers for the next day’s breakfast.