Rutabaga, Swede

Brassica napas, Napobrassica Group

Appears in

By Elizabeth Schneider

Published 2001

  • About

Also Swedish, yellow, Canadian, or Russian turnip; chou-navet jaune (French and French Canadian)

If rutabaga had been born in brassica-proud Asia instead of northern Central Europe, its probable starting place, it might have acquired a name like “golden globe” and been honored as the queen of root crops. Rutabaga is smooth-fleshed, sharp-sweet when raw, mellowed by cooking; it is neatly cuttable into trim batons or dice (or fanciful hearts and flowers); it can be pureed in soup or slivered into slaw, grated and gilded as little pancakes, steamed in dumplings, braised with sweet spices, and on and on. There is really just one way not to cook it: in lots of water for a long time—the method that is common in many English and American kitchens.