Regular readers of my blog may remember that I won vouchers for 6 Abel & Cole fruit and vegetable boxes in the Lunch Less Ordinary Challenge a couple of months ago. Well I’ve just received my fourth box which includes turnips yet again. I have to say I probably wouldn’t have chosen to buy turnip at the supermarket, but I’ve developed quite a taste for it over the last few weeks. And I love how the internet introduces me to interesting ideas of how to cook unfamiliar products. So yesterday I cooked Lamb and Turnip pie for our tea, based on a modified Waitrose recipe. Or perhaps I should call my variant Turnip and Lamb pie, as I changed the proportions to be predominantly turnip instead of lamb. As an ex-vegetarian, I get daunted by meals with a high meat content.
Ingredients (serves 2 adults and 2 children)
200g lamb neck fillet
1 medium onion
1 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp sunflower oil
1 chicken stock cube
500ml boiling water
salt and pepper
1 tsp dried rosemary (or 2 fresh sprigs)
200g puff pastry
Cut the lamb into approx 2cm pieces (or ask the butcher to when you buy it).
Season the pieces of lamb and dust generously with the flour.
Peel and chop the onion.
Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and fry the pieces of lamb and onion for a few minutes.
Make up the stock, using the stock cube and boiling water (or use fresh stock if you have some).
Add the rosemary and stock, bring to the boil and simmer gently for about 1½ hours until the lamb is soft and tender and the sauce is thick. If it is too thick, add a little more stock.
Skim the stew occasionally and discard the fat.
Peel turnips and cut into approx 2cm chunks.
Add the turnips, cover with a lid and add more water if necessary to cover the turnips.
Simmer for about 15 minutes until the turnips are cooked.
Remove from the heat and season to taste.
Leave to cool.
Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6.
When the lamb mixture is cool, transfer it to a 1.5 litre pie dish.
Beat the egg.
Roll pastry and cut out a pastry lid to fit the dish, allowing an extra 2cm all the way round.
Brush the edges of the pastry with some of the egg and lay the pastry brushed-side down on the dish, pressing it on with a fork.
Cut a 2–3cm slit in the centre to let the steam out.
Brush the top with the remaining egg.
Bake for 40–45 minutes until golden.
Serve and enjoy.
And here are a couple of other turnip recipes I made previously. The first time I got turnip in the box, my initial reaction was to try making a soup. I enjoy making soups, as I usually get the thumbs up from the kids. And this one proved no exception. Unfortunately the pie and bake didn’t wow them too, but us adults enjoyed all the recipes. (I forgot to take photos of the soup).
1 medium potato
1 medium onion
1 clove garlic
1 litre water
2 chicken stock cubes
1 tablespoon beef dripping
Peel garlic and push through garlic press.
Peel and chop other vegetables into small pieces.
Melt dripping in large saucepan over low heat.
Add vegetables and fry for about 3 minutes.
Crumble the stock cubes into a jug.
Pour boiling water into jug.
Stir to dissolve stock cubes.
Add the stock to the saucepan.
Season with salt and pepper.
Increase heat and bring to boil.
Simmer for about 15 minutes until vegetables are soft.
Puree in blender.
Return to saucepan to ensure hot.
Serve and enjoy.
And I also made a Bacon and Turnip Bake, based on a recipe I modified from Abel & Cole’s own recipe suggestions. I had some soured cream in the fridge which needed using up, so thought I’d try using that instead of buying some creme fraiche. I also didn’t have any thyme and decided to increase the amount of bacon. This was really delicious.
5 rashers smoked bacon
2 cloves of garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
salt, pepper and mixed herbs
a glass of white wine
200g soured cream (or creme fraiche)
Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas 4.
Peel and thinly slice the turnips. Cut any large slices in halves or quarters.
Peel and push garlic through garlic press.
Cut the bacon into small pieces.
Crisp up the bacon in a small heavy pan.
As it cooks, toss the sliced turnips in a bowl with garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and mixed herbs. Add to the pan. Sizzle for a min.
Add the wine.
Let it bubble up, soften the veg and let the liquid reduce down a bit (15–20 mins).
Swirl in the soured cream or crème fraîche.
If your pan’s not ovenproof, tumble everything into a baking dish.
Pop in the oven till brown (about 30 mins).
Serve and enjoy.
And a final question. Any ideas how to serve new vegetables to my fussy kids apart from in soup? I’ll be sharing one way I got them to eat butternut squash in another post soon. And I’ve also been experimenting with kale, savoy cabbage and mango from the boxes.