Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Candied Turnip and Pancetta

     This flavor combination may seem strange to some people, but it tastes very nice!  There are many modern candied root vegetable recipes and most feature bacon as the savory ingredient.  I chose imported Italian pancetta, because it has a rich dry cure flavor that is perfect with turnips.  
     Candied root vegetables do need some kind of balance to offset the sweet flavor.  A combination of wine vinegar and lemon juice keeps the sweet flavor in check.  Finely chopped aromatic vegetables add a little bit of depth to the flavor.

     Candied Turnip and Pancetta:
     This recipe makes 1 serving!
     Boil a pot of lightly salted water over medium high heat.
     Add 1 medium size peeled turnip that is cut into large bite size pieces.
     Boil the turnip, till they almost become tender.
     Cool the turnip under cold running water.
     Drain the water off of the turnip pieces and set them aside.
     Heat a saute pan over medium low heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.
     Add 2 to 2 1/2 ounces of thick bite size pieces of pancetta.
     Gently saute, till the pancetta starts to turn a golden color.
     Add the blanched turnip pieces.
     Add 1/2 clove of minced garlic.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced onion.  
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced carrot.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced seeded jalapeno pepper.
     Saute briefly, till the vegetables start to become aromatic.
     Add 1 cup of light vegetable broth.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of brown sugar.
     Add 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar.
     Add 1 pinch of thyme.
     Add 1 pinch of minced Italian parsley.
     Add sea salt and black pepper.
     Add 1 small pinch of oregano.
     Add 1 small pinch of dill weed.
     Add 1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice.
     Reduce the temperature to low heat.
     Simmer and reduce the liquid, till a thin sugar glace is formed.  Stir occasionally so the turnips finish cooking evenly.  
     Note:  The turnips should be tender by the time that the glace is created.  If they are still firm, add a splash of water and reduce a second time.
     Mound the candied turnips on a vegetable serving dish.
     Garnish the plate with Italian parsley leaves.  

     The flavors of this candied turnip and pancetta is light, sweet, savory, rich and aromatic all at the same time.  This is an elegant tasting turnip side dish!  Yum!  ...  Shawna

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