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Cooked Turnips with Pork

Serves 4

This recipe is the way my mother and grandmothers cooked turnips. It is an example of simple, basic Pennsylvania Dutch cooking. Beef can be used in place of the pork. I like it either way, but pork is my favorite. We usually serve this as a main dish and one pot meal, with rye bread and apple butter on the side. However, my grandmother sometimes served turnips, cooked with a little less meat, as a side dish for a large family meal, in which case this recipe serves more people.

Cooked Turnips Recipe Photo

Place the pork (or beef) and onions in a 5 or 6 quart stock pot. Add enough water just to cover. Season with salt and pepper. Place on high heat and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until pork is very tender, about 1 hour. Remove pork from pot. When cool enough to handle, take the meat off the bones and cut into small pieces. Reserve for later.

Add the turnips to the broth. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Bring back to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer until turnips are tender, about 30 minutes. Add the reserved pork and cook another 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Serve immediately, or keep warm over very low heat.

Notes: Although my mother never did it, I like to brown the meat in a little oil to add extra flavor to the broth. Occasionally, turnips can be somewhat bitter. When they were, my grandmother added a little brown sugar to the broth. Perhaps turnips are sweeter than they used to be, because I never have that issue. If you do, add just a little to taste.