I think baby-anything is cuter than its adult version. Puppies, kittens, baby seals, baby pandas, regular people babies. Baby vegetables, especially turnips, are cuter than their adult counterparts too – just look at these baby turnips – aren’t they just adorable?
Just look at them – aren’t they adorable? So little and white and perfectly-rounded – bursting with spring freshness! As soon as I saw them at the market, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with them and it wasn’t anything complicated. Why mess with perfection?
So what I did was a simple braise – in olive oil and lemon juice with a few garlic cloves thrown in for flavor. Some herbes de Provence a little salt and white pepper – and that’s it. And then I had the turnips with a little white wine, closing my eyes in bliss. They didn’t taste of the earth like mature turnips do, but of the sun and rain, filled with juice, bursting with a sweet flavor – unhardened by the seasons and the temperature. Babies they were – so unpolluted and pure – and so darn cute on my plate, I almost paused to eat them. Almost, of course. And then a few minutes later, they were gone, with a lemony taste lingering in my mouth for a few more moments.
1 bunch baby turnips (about 1 lb)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (not your most prized stuff, but pretty good should do)
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp herbes de provence
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash the turnips and trim their greens so only the little green stumps remain. Place them in an ovenproof clay dish and combine with the remaining ingredients. Mix everything around and be sure to have the turnips evenly coated. You want there to be roughly 1/2 an inch of oil/lemon juice combo.
Cover the dish and cook in the oven for around 40 minutes – when turnips are done, they should be soft when you pierce them. They might also burst a little with juice.
You can eat them plain like I did, or as a side dish to whatever you happen to be making. They’re terribly good, these turnips and we wished we had more of them to go around. I also discovered that you can eat the green stumps on them – they get all lemony and soft and are very tasty!