Root crops are one of the fall garden’s bounties. On a recent trip to the garden, I harvested about 3 lbs of turnips and had to do some recipe research to decide how to fix them. I not only had a big bowl of the roots, there was a sink-full of the nutritious greens. As a transplanted southerner, I didn’t grow up eating or cooking turnip greens. First step — I set out to find a “traditional” southern greens recipe. This is my first attempt at Southern Style Holiday Greens with minor adaptations.
Southern Style Holiday Greens
3 bunches of turnip greens
3 bunches of mustard greens
1/4 cup of butter
1/2 cup of dill pickle juice
5 slices of bacon
1/3 cup of diced onion
salt and pepper to taste
1. Rinse the greens well, chop and place in a big pot with 8 cups of water. Add the butter, pickle juice, bacon and onion, and bring to a rolling boil.
2. Continue cooking at a full boil for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to low, and simmer for an additional 30 minutes, until tender. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
My adaptations: I had all turnip greens this time, but will try this recipe when my mustard greens are ready. I didn’t want to boil the bacon, so I fried a half cup of Benton’s bacon end scraps and removed about half the fat. I did not add the butter. I cooked the onion in the bacon renderings and then added the greens and liquids. I used chicken stock instead of water. I didn’t have pickle juice, so I used 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar and added 1 Tbls. of white sugar. To add a little kick, I added 1 1/2 tsp. of Sriracha sauce.
OMG! This was delicious. Tangy with a touch of sweetness and the smokiness of the bacon…mm-mm!
Now, what to do with the turnips??