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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Turnips in Coconut and Mustard Seed Curry

I remember thinking last winter, overwhelmed by mothering a newborn and 3 year old under feet of snow, that I would never feel light and free again. I wondered if there would ever be a day I could take Dylan on a special outing just the two of us, listen to the radio in a quiet car, or get a hair cut. Slowly these (seemingly trivial) things are coming back to me and because this past year's efforts are still so fresh I'm really appreciating them.

Just before Thanksgiving, Dylan and I went on a special adventure to the Cape Poge Lighthouse. We piled into the back of an open pick up truck with friends and drove over sand, through the sea, and up to the light. We climbed to the top and saw, because it was a clear day, all the way to Nantucket. For the first time in 14 months I wasn't looking at a clock, worried about impending nursing or nap time, but was able to simply enjoy this magical place and my little guy's company. Don't get me wrong, everyday is not this smooth, but it helps to have a little push now and then. On the way home I caught a minute of The Splendid Table and decided to make Turnips in Coconut and Mustard Seed Curry right away. It was the best curry I've made at home - a must try.

PS. If a Yukon gold potato and a parsnip had a baby it would be a young turnip.

Turnips in Coconut and Mustard Seed Curry 
From The Splendid Table (via Vikas Khanna)
1/4 cup vegetable oil 
1 tablespoon black mustard seeds *I used yellow because that's what I had
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic 
1 small red onion, finely chopped 
1 fresh green chile pepper (such as serrano) seeded and minced *I omitted for the kids
1 teaspoon ground cumin 
1 tablespoon ground coriander 
1 medium tomato, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped 
1 pound tender turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces 
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk *I used the whole 15-ounce can
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric 
1 teaspoon salt 
1 cup water 
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, for garnish *I left out because didn't have any

Heat the oil in a heavy-bottom skillet over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and cook until crackling, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic, onion, and green chile and cook until onion turns golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the cumin, coriander, and tomato and cook, 5 to 7 minutes. 

Add the turnips, coconut milk, turmeric, and salt and mix until all the ingredients are well combined. Add water and cook, stirring occasionally, until the turnips are cooked, 15 to 20 minutes. Increase the heat to high and cook until any remaining water is evaporated, about 3 minutes. Serve hot, garnished with dill.


  1. Awesome recipe Sarah! Looks delicious! What restaurant have you had the best curried turnips? Remember to add it to your Besty List!

  2. Oh yum. I am going to try this soon! I heard it on the Splendid Table, too, but couldn't picture it somehow. This looks amazing!

  3. I made this tonight with black mustard seeds and no dill. Super easy and so good!! Ate it with Trader Joe's garlic naan.


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