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Swede is probably the nation's most misunderstood and overlooked vegetable. It doesn't help that it has various names. In America it's called a Rutabaga, in Scotland it's a Turnip. If you're even aware of it's existence, regardless of what you call it, then well done! It has the reputation of a large, unwieldy root that requires a lot of work for very little flavour return. I beg to differ and implore you to give the swede a second chance. For those of us living in temperate regions with long cold winters, this is a wonder veg, bringing us a fresh source of nutrients when all the rest of the roots have been harvested before Christmas and subsequently sourced from winter storage.
It has the sweetness of a carrot, the tartness of a radish and the texture of a turnip (another vegetable that gets a bad press!)
When roasted it’s flesh goes a deeper orange and the taste becomes sweeter, a bit like butternut squash, with a nutty, buttery flavor. It’s absolutely delicious. Trust me!
So here’s a compilation of recipes you could try out with your swede:
With some Indian spices, you can turn pretty much any vegetable into a delicious curry.
Try Anna Jones’ Swede creations – a Swede Carbonara and Maple & Black pepper roasted swede
If you’re looking for something a bit more native, then try our super simple neeps and tatties recipe – a Scottish Burn’s Night favourite
Add some swede to this traditional chunky vegetable soup for a good old warming winter stew
Swede and spinach loaf (scroll to the bottom of the page)
Layers of swede interspersed with sprigs of thyme, wilted spinach and generous helpings of gruyere cheese. What's not to like?
A soup to warm hearts, minds and bodies on cold winter days, made by GC staffer Caroline.
Swede makes an unusual component to this Malaysian-spiced coconut broth but it totally works! If you want a speedy meal then you can buy a jar of laksa paste instead of making it from scratch. Thai orange or red curry paste would also work with this recipe.