Saturday, January 5, 2008


If the Brain and I ever have a kid, it would be fun to name it Rutabaga. Well if we decided to go with a super non-traditional name. And if you yell it its really fun. Or try saying "there there Rutabaga it'll be okay." OK, I'm not really serious. But it is an incredibly fun word. One of my favorites. Maybe that's why I like eating it so much?

Well and its orange. My Kitchen Aid mixer is orange. Yellow is my favorite color, but orange definitely comes in second. And to be honest, I like the taste of a good rutabaga. Its turnipy and yet not.

Tonight's vegetable side dish, although not the most inspired, comes yet again from Mr. Jack Bishop's Vegetables Every Day cookbook. People you need this cookbook. Not only does it have a plethora of recipes for all different vegetables, it has tips on how to pick a good one and how to store them and the best methods of cooking. Its like a vegetable manual. For example, there are four recipes devoted to rutabagas and he says that "Rutabagas can be refrigerated for at least a week in the vegetable drawer. Because they are generally coated with wax, they may stay fresh for a couple of weeks." Seriously. Where else would you find this kind of information? There's also a bunch of vegetables I've never heard of in here, like Boniato (3 recipes), Malanga (2 recipes), and Salisify and Scorzonera (2 recipes). Don't worry though, common vegetables have many more recipes to them. Peppers have 13 recipes.

Alright, so tonight I made Mashed Rutabaga with Orange and Ginger. This is a pretty foolproof recipe. Or Mary-proof if you will. See, I wanted to cut the recipe in half because I'm going to get fat on vegetables if I continue to eat such huge portion sizes. Remember the cucumber salad? Unfortunately, although I managed to cut all the other ingredients in half, I neglected to cut the ginger in half. ooops. Not to worry, I added some salt and its way better now. I also pureed it in the Cuisinart because I don't like it lumpy. Even though mine is still mighty gingery, I know that if I had followed the directions correctly, the poor Brain would spend another dinner without a vegetable.

Mashed Rutabaga with Orange and Ginger

1 large (2 pound) rutabaga, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp grated orange zest
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 tsp ground ginger

Put rutabaga chunks in a saucepan and cover with 2 inches of water salted generously. Boil for approximately 30 minutes or until rutabaga is very soft. Drain.

Add butter and zest and mash with a potato masher (or stick it in the food processor like I did) until the rutabaga is smooth. Stir in orange juice and ginger. Serve.


Zylo said...

Malanga root? How long does it last? I've had one sitting around for... a long time and I have no idea when I'm going to use it. I've also never had rutabaga, but I have fond memories of Rabbit planting them in his garden.

Mary said...

Hey Zylo! According to the book, "Malanga can be kept in a cool, well-ventilated spot for several days. Do not refrigerate." He also says it "should be very hard with no signs of mold, even on the ends."