Turnips! I had no clue what a turnip was until last year, when I first got them in my CSA box. Turnips are yummy little root vegetables that are like potatoes but with a tangy-er taste. You can mash them, puree them, roast them. But my personal favorite– risotto them. Now risotto is known to be extremely difficult to make. The way I do it isn’t hard at all, but I also don’t claim to be doing it right. All I know is it’s totes nommy at the end.
- 3 bacon slices
- 1 small onion
- 2 medium turnips (preferably with greens; about ½ pound total)
- 3 ½ cups chicken broth
- ¾ cup Arborio rice
- Garnish: freshly grated Parmesan
In a 3-quart heavy saucepan cook bacon over moderate heat until crisp and golden and transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Making more than 3 slices is not a bad idea; when is more bacon bad? I personally did 4 big slices. Reserve 1 tablespoon fat in pan. Chop onion. Peel turnips and cut into ¼-inch dice (if using greens, cut into ¼-inch-wide slices and chop stems). In a separate saucepan bring broth to a simmer and keep at a bare simmer.
Heat reserved fat over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sauté onion, stirring, until just beginning to soften. Stir in turnips (and greens if using, in this case my greens were wilted so I added fresh corn kernels instead for brightness in taste and appearance) and rice and sauté, stirring constantly, 1 minute. I don’t think risotto is risotto without wine, so here I added about a ¼ cup of dry white wine, and waited until absorbed before adding broth. Stir in 1 cup simmering broth and cook, stirring constantly and keeping at a strong simmer, until absorbed. Continue simmering and adding broth, about ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly and letting each addition be absorbed before adding next, until rice is tender and creamy-looking but still al dente, about 18 minutes total. For me, this was a little too bland, so I added some salt, pepper, and about a tablespoon of butter to richen it.
Crumble bacon. Serve risotto sprinkled with bacon and garnished with Parmesan.