What do you do with a Rutabaga?

By Winsome Miller, Manager of Community Services.

Every month, The Stop highlights one or two seasonal vegetables to serve in our Food Bank and Drop-in Meal programs. Turnips and rutabagas—our picks for January—might not be as well-known as other root vegetables like onions and potatoes, but they’re easy to cook, inexpensive, and a great source of nutrition.

Their sweet, crisp flesh is rich in complex carbohydrates, contains modest amounts of protein, and has a surprisingly high concentration of vitamin C. One cup of fresh rutabaga cubes provides over 35% of the daily requirement of vitamin C, while 1 cup of turnip cubes contains about 20%. Rutabagas also supply some B vitamins, iron, and a sizable amount of potassium.

The sweet and somewhat peppery flesh of turnips and rutabagas makes them an excellent side dish and a tasty addition to salads, soups, and stews. Here’s a delicious, easy recipe for turnip and rutabaga mash.

Turnip and Rutabaga Mash

2 lb. rutabagas, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 lb. turnips, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 tbsp and 2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. grated horseradish
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Place the rutabagas and turnips in a large pot. Add 1 tablespoon of salt, and water to cover by 2 inches. Place over high heat and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, or until everything is soft. Drain and allow to steam dry for 5 minutes.

For a coarser mash, mash the vegetables by hand with a potato masher. Add the remaining ingredients and seasonings.

For a smoother mash, place the vegetables in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to start mashing. Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth. Enjoy!