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Creamed Turnips

Yesterday I made a visit to the Uhlmann farm, just down the road from my parent’s home.  Steve and Debbie Uhlmann have been long-time friends of my family and I grew up with their children.

Debbie comes from a family of split white oak basket makers that dates back more than 60 years and Steve’s family have farmed their homestead since 1888.  Talk about some major history- the Uhlmann family are also well known for hardwork and good country cooking in Douglas County.  Which brings me to why I stopped in about lunch time to visit with Debbie.

I am working on a couple cooking articles and Debbie was my subject, plus she hadn’t seen my son in quite awhile and asked me to bring him with me.

She was preparing Cranberry Tea, a Cheese Ball and Creamed Turnips.  Now, I’m not a really big fan of turnips.  I’ve found them hard to prepare and if you don’t do it just right, they turn out bitter.  But, saying that, I love a good turnip recipe.

It was fitting that Debbie made this recipe because mom and I had taken my son down to the corral to feed the steers and dig up some turnips from the garden for me to take home earlier in the morning- so I was in need of a new recipe.

Debbie provided we with this advice in cooking turnips- never overcook them or they will have a very strong taste and become bitter.  If you have to reheat them, do it slowly and do not cook them more.  She says you want them to still be “tender crisp” when ready to eat.

Here is Debbie’s Creamed Turnip recipe that would make an excellent side dish on your Thanksgiving table.

Creamed Turnips
4 cups turnips, peeled and chopped (about ½ inch)
Cover turnips with water in medium saucepan and bring to boil.  Simmer for 7 minutes or until tender crisp- do not overcook.  Pour out water, cover and set aside.

Sauce:
¼ cup butter
1/3 cup flour
2-2 ½ cups milk
¾ tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Pinch of sugar (optional)

Melt butter in pan or skillet, add flour and mix well.  Add 2 cups of the milk and stir constantly until it thickens and comes to a full boil.  Cook 1 minute, and then add salt, pepper and sugar.  Add extra milk if it’s too thick; mixture should be a bit thicker than gravy.  Stir into turnips and enjoy!  This recipe is from my mom, Helen Davis, but she never measured anything and it always turned out great.

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