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Roasted Japanese Turnips with Honey

Recipe for May 22, 2011



This is the time of the year when the market has those tiny white turnips.  Here’s a recipe that answers the question, “what do I do with turnips?”  You may also use the tender green leaves in a braising recipe.


20 small golf-ball-size Japanese-style turnips*, stems trimmed to ¼ inch, sliced in half lengthwise

1 tablespoon plus one teaspoon vegetable oil

½ teaspoon kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon honey*

Pinch of cayenne


In a medium bowl, toss the turnips with 1 tablespoon oil, the salt, and some pepper.

Heat a large cast-iron pan over medium-high heat.  When it is quite hot, coat the pan with the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and add the turnips.  Reduce the heat to medium and toss the turnips.  Sauté, shaking the pan frequently, until the turnips are starting to turn golden brown, especially on the cut sides, and are almost tender but still slightly firm, 8 to 10 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine the honey and cayenne with 1 tablespoon water.  Add this to the turnips and cook, tossing for another few minutes, until the turnips are tender.

Serves 4 

*Ingredients can be found at the market