The turnip or white turnip (Brassica rapa subsp. rapa) is a root vegetable commonly grown in temperate climates worldwide for its white, fleshy taproot. The word turnip is a compound of tur- as in turned/rounded on a lathe and neep, derived from Latin napus, the word for the plant. Small, tender varieties are grown for human consumption, while larger varieties are grown as feed for livestock. In the north of England, Scotland, Ireland, Cornwall and eastern Canada (Newfoundland and the Maritimes), turnip (or neep) often refers to rutabaga, a larger, yellow root vegetable in the same genus (Brassica) also known as swede (from "Swedish turnip").
B. rapa var. rapa
|Brassica rapa var. rapa|
The most common type of turnip is mostly white-skinned apart from the upper 1–6 centimetres (0.39–2.36 in), which protrude above the ground and are purple or red or greenish where the sun has hit. This above-ground part develops from stem tissue, but is fused with the root. The interior flesh is entirely white. The root is roughly globular, from 5–20 centimetres (2.0–7.9 in) in diameter, and lacks side roots. Underneath, the taproot (the normal root below the swollen storage root) is thin and 10 centimetres (3.9 in) or more in length; it is trimmed off before the vegetable is sold. The leaves grow directly from the above-ground shoulder of the root, with little or no visible crown or neck (as found in rutabagas).
Turnip leaves are sometimes eaten as "turnip greens" ("turnip tops" in the UK), and they resemble mustard greens (to which they are closely related) in flavor. Turnip greens are a common side dish in southeastern U.S. cooking, primarily during late fall and winter. Smaller leaves are preferred, but the bitter taste of larger leaves can be reduced by pouring off the water from the initial boiling and replacing it with fresh water. Varieties of turnip grown specifically for their leaves resemble mustard greens and have small or no storage roots. These include rapini (broccoli rabe), bok choy, and Chinese cabbage. Similar to raw cabbage or radish, turnip leaves and roots have a pungent flavor that becomes milder after cooking.
Turnip roots weigh up to 1 kilogram (2.2 lb), although they are usually harvested when smaller. Size is partly a function of variety and partly a function of the length of time the turnip has grown. Most very small turnips (also called baby turnips) are specialty varieties. These are only available when freshly harvested and do not keep well. Most baby turnips can be eaten whole, including their leaves. Baby turnips are sold in yellow-, orange-, and red-fleshed varieties, as well as white-fleshed. Their flavor is mild, so they can be eaten raw in salads like radishes and other vegetables.
|Turnip greens, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt|
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||84 kJ (20 kcal)|
|Dietary fiber||3.5 g|
|Vitamin A equiv.|
|Pantothenic acid (B5)|
|†Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults. |
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
|Turnips, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt|
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||92 kJ (22 kcal)|
|Dietary fiber||2.0 g|
|Pantothenic acid (B5)|
|†Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults. |
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Boiled green leaves of the turnip top ("turnip greens") provide 20 calories in a 100 gram amount, and are 93% water, 4% carbohydrates, and 1% protein, with negligible fat (table). The boiled greens are a rich source (more than 20% of the Daily Value, DV) particularly of vitamin K (350% DV), with vitamin A, vitamin C, and folate also in significant content (30% DV or greater, table). Boiled turnip greens also contain substantial lutein (8440 micrograms per 100 g).
In a 100 gram reference amount, boiled turnip supplies 22 calories, with only vitamin C in a moderate amount (14% DV). Other micronutrients in boiled turnip are in low or negligible content (table). Boiled turnip is 94% water, 5% carbohydrates, and 1% protein, with negligible fat.
Some evidence shows the turnip was domesticated before the 15th century BC; it was grown in India at this time for its oil-bearing seeds. The turnip was a well-established crop in Hellenistic and Roman times, which leads to the assumption that it was brought into cultivation earlier. Sappho, a Greek poet from the seventh century BC, calls one of her paramours Gongýla, "turnip". Zohary and Hopf note, however, "there are almost no archaeological records available" to help determine its earlier history and domestication. Wild forms of the hot turnip and its relatives the mustards and radishes are found over west Asia and Europe, suggesting their domestication took place somewhere in that area. However, Zohary and Hopf conclude, "Suggestions as to the origins of these plants are necessarily based on linguistic considerations."
The 1881 Household Cyclopedia gives these instructions for field cultivation of turnips in the United States:
The benefits derived from turnip husbandry are of great magnitude; light soils are cultivated with profit and facility; abundance of food is provided for man and beast; the earth is turned to the uses for which it is physically calculated, and by being suitably cleaned with this preparatory crop, a bed is provided for grass seeds, wherein they flourish and prosper with greater vigor than after any other preparation.
The first ploughing is given immediately after harvest, or as soon as the wheat seed is finished, either in length or across the field, as circumstances may seem to require. In this state the ground remains till the oat seed is finished, when a second ploughing is given to it, usually in a contrary direction to the first. It is then repeatedly harrowed, often rolled between the harrowings and every particle of root-weeds carefully picked off with the hand; a third ploughing is then bestowed, and the other operations are repeated. In this stage, if the ground has not been very foul, the seed process.
The next part of the process is the sowing of the seed; this may be performed by drilling machines of different sizes and constructions, through all acting on the same principle. A machine drawn by a horse in a pair of shafts, sows two drills at a time and answers extremely well, where the ground is flat, and the drills properly made up. The weight of the machine ensures a regularity of sowing hardly to be gained by those of a different size and construction. From two to three pounds of seed are sown upon the acre (2 to 3 kg/hectare), though the smallest of these quantities will give many more plants in ordinary seasons than are necessary; but as the seed is not an expensive article the greater part of farmers incline to sow thick, which both provides against the danger of part of the seed perishing, and gives the young plants an advantage at the outset.
Turnips are sown from the beginning to the end of June, but the second and third weeks of the month are, by judicious farmers, accounted the most proper time. Some people have sown as early as May, and with advantage, but these early fields are apt to run to seed before winter, especially if the autumn be favorable to vegetation. As a general rule it may be laid down that the earliest sowings should be on the latest soils; plants on such soils are often long before they make any great progress, and, in the end, may be far behind those in other situations, which were much later sown. The hot turnip plant, indeed, does not thrive rapidly till its roots reach the dung, and the previous nourishment afforded them is often so scanty as to stunt them altogether before they get so far.
The first thing to be done in this process is to run a horse-hoe, called a scraper, along the intervals, keeping at such a distance from the young plants that they shall not be injured; this operation destroys all the annual weeds which have sprung up, and leaves the plants standing in regular stripes or rows. The hand hoeing then commences, by which the turnips are all singled out at a distance of from 8–12 inches, and the redundant ones drawn into the spaces between the rows. The singling out of the young plants is an operation of great importance, for an error committed in this process can hardly be afterward rectified. Boys and girls are always employed as hoers; but a steady and trusty man-servant is usually set over them to see that the work is properly executed.
In eight or ten days, or such a length of time as circumstances may require, a horse-hoe of a different construction from the scraper is used. This, in fact, is generally a small plough, of the same kind with that commonly wrought, but of smaller dimensions. By this implement, the earth is pared away from the sides of the drills, and a sort of new ridge formed in the middle of the former interval. The hand-hoers are again set to work, and every weed and superfluous turnip is cut up; afterward the horse-hoe is employed to separate the earth, which it formerly threw into the furrows, and lay it back to the sides of the drills. On dry lands this is done by the scraper, but where the least tendency to moisture prevails, the small plough is used, in order that the furrows may be perfectly cleaned out. This latter mode, indeed, is very generally practiced.
As a root crop, turnips grow best in cool weather; hot temperatures cause the roots to become woody and bad-tasting. They are typically planted in the spring in cold-weather climates (such as the northern US and Canada) where the growing season is only 3–4 months. In temperate climates (ones with a growing season of 5–6 months), turnips may also be planted in late summer for a second fall crop. In warm-weather climates (7 or more month growing season), they are planted in the fall. 55–60 days is the average time from planting to harvest.
Turnips are a biennial plant, taking two years from germination to reproduction. The root spends the first year growing and storing nutrients, and the second year flowers, produces seeds, and dies. The flowers of the turnip are tall and yellow, with the seeds forming in pea-like pods. In areas with less than seven-month growing seasons, temperatures are too cold for the roots to survive the winter. To produce seeds, pulling the turnips and storing them over winter is necessary, taking care not to damage the leaves. During the spring, they may be set back in the ground to complete their lifecycle.
Pliny the Elder considered the turnip one of the most important vegetables of his day, rating it "directly after cereals or at all events after the bean, since its utility surpasses that of any other plant". Pliny praised it as a source of fodder for farm animals, noting that this vegetable is not particular about the type of soil in which it grows and, because it can be left in the ground until the next harvest, it "prevents the effects of famine" for humans.
In most of England, the smaller white vegetables are called turnips, while the larger yellow ones are referred to as swedes. In the United States, turnips are the same, but swedes are usually called rutabagas. In Scotland, Ireland, parts of northern England, and parts of Canada, the usage varies and is sometimes confusingly reversed, with the yellow vegetables being called turnips or neeps, and the white ones swedes. Neeps are mashed and eaten with haggis, traditionally on Burns Night.
Turnip lanterns are an old tradition; since inaugural Halloween festivals in Ireland and Scotland, turnips (rutabaga) have been carved out and used as candle lanterns. At Samhain, candle lanterns carved from turnips — samhnag — were part of the traditional Celtic festival. Large turnips were hollowed out, carved with faces, and placed in windows, used to ward off harmful spirits. At Halloween in Scotland in 1895, masqueraders in disguise carried lanterns made out of scooped-out turnips.
In Nordic countries, turnips provided the staple crop before their replacement by the potato in the 18th century. The cross between turnip and cabbage, rutabaga, was possibly first produced in Scandinavia.
In Turkey, particularly in the area near Adana, turnips are used to flavor şalgam, a juice made from purple carrots and spices served ice cold. In Middle Eastern countries such as Lebanon, turnips are pickled.
In the United States, stewed turnips are eaten as a root vegetable in the autumn and winter. The greens of the turnip are harvested and eaten all year. Turnip greens may be cooked with a ham hock or piece of fat pork meat, the juice produced in the stewing process prized as pot liquor. Stewed turnip greens are often eaten with vinegar.
In Iran, boiled turnip-roots (with salt) are a common household remedy for cough and cold.
In the Punjab and Kashmir regions of India and Pakistan, turnips are used in variety of dishes, most notably Shab Degh.
In Brazil, turnips (nabos) are traditionally regarded as distasteful, or at least somewhat disagreeable and unpleasant at the first bite or taste. Part of this bias reportedly stems from the Middle Ages, where, for the reason of being inexpensive, turnips became in Iberia (and thus in Iberian-descended cultures) associated with the poor, and avoided in the diet of the nobility.
The arms of the former municipality of Kiikala, Finland, were Gules, a turnip Or.
Amanita daucipes is a species of fungus in the Amanitaceae family of the Agaricales order of mushrooms. Found exclusively in North America, the mushroom may be recognized in the field by the medium to large white caps with pale orange tints, and the dense covering of pale orange or reddish-brown powdery conical warts on the cap surface. The mushroom also has a characteristic large bulb at the base of its stem with a blunt short rooting base, whose shape is suggestive of the common names carrot-footed Lepidella, carrot-foot Amanita, or turnip-foot Amanita. The mushroom has a strong odor that has been described variously as "sweet and nauseous", or compared to an old ham bone, or soap. Edibility is unknown for the species, but consumption is generally not recommended due its position in the Amanita subgroup Lepidella, which contains some poisonous members.Arisaema triphyllum
Arisaema triphyllum (jack-in-the-pulpit, bog onion, brown dragon, Indian turnip, American wake robin, or wild turnip) is a herbaceous perennial plant growing from a corm. It is a highly variable species typically growing 30–65 centimetres (12–26 in) in height with three-parted leaves and flowers contained in a spadix that is covered by a hood. It is native to eastern North America, occurring in moist woodlands and thickets from Nova Scotia west to Minnesota, and south to southern Florida and Texas.Brassica rapa
Brassica rapa is a plant consisting of various widely cultivated subspecies including the turnip (a root vegetable); napa cabbage, bomdong, bok choy, and cime di rapa (leaf vegetables); and Brassica rapa subsp. oleifera, an oilseed which has many common names, including turnip rape, field mustard, bird rape, and keblock.The oil made from the seed is sometimes also called canola or colza, which is one reason why it is sometimes confused with rapeseed oil, but this comes from a different Brassica species (Brassica napus). The oilseeds known as canola are sometimes particular varieties of Brassica rapa (termed Polish Canola) but usually the related species Brassica napus (rapeseed) and Brassica juncea (mustard greens and mizuna).Researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison have selectively bred one subspecies of B. rapa to have an extremely short life cycle for use as a model organism in education and experiment. This variety is known by the trademarked name "Wisconsin Fast Plants."Celeriac
Celeriac (Apium graveolens var. rapaceum), also called turnip-rooted celery (although it is not a close relative of the turnip), celery root, or knob celery, is a variety of celery cultivated for its edible stem or hypocotyl, and shoots. Celeriac is like a root vegetable except it has a bulbous hypocotyl with many small roots attached.
In the Mediterranean Basin and in Northern Europe, celeriac is widely cultivated. It is also cultivated in North Africa, Siberia, Southwest Asia, and North America. In North America, the 'Diamant' cultivar predominates. The root is cultivated in Puerto Rico, sold locally at farmers' markets and supermarkets, and is a traditional staple of the Puerto Rican kitchen.Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend
Charles Townshend, 2nd Viscount Townshend, (; 18 April 1674 – 21 June 1738) was an English Whig statesman. He served for a decade as Secretary of State for the Northern Department, 1714–1717, 1721–1730. He directed British foreign policy in close collaboration with his brother-in-law, prime minister Robert Walpole. He was often known as Turnip Townshend because of his strong interest in farming turnips and his role in the British Agricultural Revolution.Jack-o'-lantern
A jack-o'-lantern (or jack o'lantern) is a carved pumpkin, turnip, or other root vegetable lantern associated with Halloween. Its name comes from the phenomenon of a strange light flickering over peat bogs, called will-o'-the-wisp or jack-o'-lantern. The name is also tied to the Irish legend of Stingy Jack, a drunkard who bargains with Satan and is doomed to roam the Earth with only a hollowed turnip to light his way.
Jack-o'-lanterns are a yearly Halloween tradition that came to the United States from Irish immigrants. In a jack-o'-lantern, the top of the pumpkin or turnip is cut off to form a lid, the inside flesh is scooped out, and an image — usually a scary or funny face – is carved out of the rind to expose the hollow interior. To create the lantern effect, a light source, traditionally a flame such as a candle or tea light, is placed within before the lid is closed. However, artificial jack-'o-lanterns with electric lights are also marketed. It is common to see jack-o'-lanterns on doorsteps and otherwise used as decorations prior to and on Halloween.Kabura-ya
Kabura-ya (鏑矢, "turnip-headed arrow") is a type of arrow used by the samurai class of feudal Japan. Kabura-ya were arrows which whistled when shot and were used in ritual archery exchanges before formal medieval battles. The sound was created by a specially carved or perforated bulb of deer horn or wood attached to the tip. In English, these are often called "whistling-bulb arrows", "messenger arrows", or "signal arrows." Kabura literally translates to "turnip", and thus the Japanese term technically means "turnip-shaped arrows." The Chinese xiangjian (sometimes pronounced and written mingdi) was quite similar, and until the end of the Warlord Era were commonly used by bandits to announce the gang's approach.Kohlrabi
Kohlrabi (from the German for cabbage turnip; Brassica oleracea Gongylodes Group), also called German turnip, is a biennial vegetable, a low, stout cultivar of wild cabbage. It is the same species as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, Savoy cabbage, and gai lan.
It can be eaten raw or cooked. Edible preparations are made with both the stem and the leaves. Despite its common names, it is not the same species as turnip.Pachyrhizus erosus
Pachyrhizus erosus, commonly known as jicama ( or ; Spanish jícama [ˈxikama] ; from Nahuatl xīcamatl, [ʃiːˈkamatɬ]), Mexican yam bean, or Mexican turnip, is the name of a native Mexican vine, although the name most commonly refers to the plant's edible tuberous root. Jícama is a species in the genus Pachyrhizus in the bean family (Fabaceae). Plants in this genus are commonly referred to as yam bean, although the term "yam bean" can be another name for jícama. The other major species of yam beans are also indigenous within the Americas. Pachyrhizus tuberosus and Pachyrhizus ahipa are the other two cultivated species. The naming of this group of edible plants seems confused, with much overlap of similar or the same common names.
Flowers, either blue or white, and pods similar to lima beans, are produced on fully developed plants. Several species of jicama occur, but the one found in many markets is P. erosus. The two cultivated forms of P. erosus are jicama de agua and jicama de leche, both named for the consistency of their juice. The leche form has an elongated root and milky juice, while the agua form has a top-shaped to oblate root and a more watery, translucent juice, and is the preferred form for market.Peyote
Lophophora williamsii () or peyote () is a small, spineless cactus with psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline. Peyote is a Spanish word derived from the Nahuatl, or Aztec, peyōtl [ˈpejoːt͡ɬ], meaning "glisten" or "glistening". Other sources translate the Nahuatl word as "Divine Messenger". Peyote is native to Mexico and southwestern Texas. It is found primarily in the Chihuahuan Desert and in the states of Coahuila, Nuevo León, Tamaulipas, and San Luis Potosí among scrub. It flowers from March to May, and sometimes as late as September. The flowers are pink, with thigmotactic anthers (like Opuntia).
Known for its psychoactive properties when ingested, peyote is used worldwide, having a long history of ritualistic and medicinal use by indigenous North Americans. Peyote contains the hallucinogen mescaline.Reality Bites
Reality Bites is a 1994 American romantic comedy-drama film written by Helen Childress and directed by Ben Stiller. It stars Winona Ryder, Ethan Hawke and Stiller, with supporting roles by Janeane Garofalo and Steve Zahn. The plot follows Lelaina (Ryder), an aspiring videographer working on a documentary called Reality Bites about the disenfranchised lives of her friends and roommates. Their challenges exemplify some of the career and lifestyle choices faced by Generation X.
The film received mixed reviews from critics, but was a box office success, grossing $33.4 million worldwide against an $11.5 million budget. Critics highlighted the performances of Ryder, Hawke and Garofalo in particular.In the years since the initial release of the film, it has achieved cult status and has been singled out as one of the films that captured the zeitgeist of the early 1990s grunge scene among young adults, while also bringing attention to various issues that plagued young Americans at the time.Rutabaga
The rutabaga (North American English), swede (Commonwealth English), neep (Scottish) or snagger (Northern English), also called by several other names in different regions (including turnip, though this elsewhere usually refers to the "white turnip"), is a root vegetable that originated as a cross between the cabbage and the turnip. The roots are eaten in a variety of ways, and the leaves can be eaten as a leaf vegetable. The roots and tops are also used as winter feed that is fed directly or that livestock can forage in the field during the other seasons. Scotland and Ireland have a tradition of carving the roots into lanterns at Halloween.Shab Deg
Shabdeg or Shab daig (Urdu: شب دیگ ) is cooked with Turnip and the meat version includes lamb, beef or chicken. This dish is believed to have originated from Kashmir. "Shab" means night and "daigh" means cooking pot in Urdu language. This dish was left to simmer during the night.The Gigantic Turnip
"The Gigantic Turnip" or "The Enormous Turnip" (Russian: Репка) is a Russian folktale.
The tale was collected by Aleksandr Afanas'ev is his 1850s Narodnye russkie skazki (tale number 89). The story has been rewritten and adapted numerous times, and translated into other languages.The Turnip (fairy tale)
"The Turnip" is a German fairy tale collected by the Brothers Grimm in Grimm's Fairy Tales as tale number 146.It is Aarne-Thompson type 1960D, the giant vegetable, and type 1689A, two presents for the king, with elements from type 1737, trading places with the trickster in a sack.Turnip Hole, Pennsylvania
Turnip Hole is an unincorporated community in Clarion County, Pennsylvania, United States.
A post office called Turnip Hole was established in 1889, and remained in operation until it was discontinued in 1911. Turnip Hole has been noted for its colorful place name.Turnip cake
Turnip cake (traditional Chinese: 蘿蔔糕; simplified Chinese: 萝卜糕; pinyin: luóbo gāo; Cantonese Yale: lòbaahk gōu) is a Chinese dim sum dish. The less commonly used radish cake is a more accurate name, as Western-style turnips are not used in the dish but rather shredded radish (typically Chinese radish) and plain rice flour. It is traditionally called carrot cake in Singapore.
Turnip cake is commonly served in Cantonese yum cha, usually cut into rectangular slices and sometimes pan-fried before serving. Each pan-fried cake has a thin crunchy layer on the outside from frying, and is soft on the inside. The non-fried version is soft all over. It is one of the standard dishes found in the dim sum cuisine of Hong Kong and China as well as overseas Chinatown restaurants. It is also commonly eaten during Chinese New Year, since the word for radish (菜頭, chhài-thâu) is a homophone for "good fortune" (好彩頭, hó-chhái-thâu) in the Hokkien language. In Taiwan, turnip cake is also commonly eaten as part of a breakfast in Chinese speaking areas.Turnip moth
The turnip moth (Agrotis segetum) is a moth of the family Noctuidae. It is a common European species, but it is also found in Asia and Africa, very likely having been spread by the international trade in nursery stock. It is known to migrate some distances. The species was first described by Michael Denis and Ignaz Schiffermüller in 1775.
It is a cutworm in the genus Agrotis, which possibly is the genus that includes the largest number of species of cutworms.Şalgam
Şalgam or Şalgam Suyu. It is pronounced "shal-gum"
(in translation: "turnip juice") is a popular and traditional beverage from the southern Turkey cities Adana, Hatay, Tarsus, Mersin, Kahramanmaras, İzmir and the Çukurova region. Salgam is produced by lactic acid fermentation.
The name şalgam is Persian in origin; in Persian it is written شلغم and means "turnip" (Brassica rapa). The French traveler, naturalist and writer Pierre Belon described the existence of the drink and the practice of its creation already in the 15th century. It is either called turnip juice, turnip water, shalgam juice, or shalgam water.
Studies have also shown that the juice of the purple carrot used in Salgam reduces the effects of high-carbohydrate diets.Besides Raki and Ayran it is drunk after eating Kebab.
Very often a slice of purple carrot is added just before drinking and other times wedges of paprica and garlic.
Şalgam is often served with the alcoholic drink rakı — not mixed, but rather in a separate glass as both complement the taste of the other drink.
It is also part of Armenian cuisine. In some parts of Turkey both Ayran and Şalgam are mixed together
It is considered to be one of the most drunk beverages during winter in Turkey. The renowned food critic Jim Leff compared its taste to the taste of sour cherries. The Kanji (drink) is a similar drink that is consumed in the Indian subcontinent.