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We give turnips two thumbs down!

February 29, 2008

CIMG1323 Vegetarianism  has gotten a lot of media play recently and we are highly susceptible to the hype so we decided to have one meatless meal a week. Our first attempt was squash soup and it was really good. We also still haven’t eaten it all since the recipe required FOUR POUNDS of squash but I digress.  Our second attempt was a recipe we found on Fake Plastic Fish. Since she gave it good reviews we thought we should give it a shot. 

Here is the recipe from Beth:

Recipe 1: Red Lentil Loaf(based on the recipe posted here:

  • 1 cup dried red lentils (We had green ones from a soup experiment so we used those instead)
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 whole egg 
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice (Beth used quinoa and liked it we didn’t have either so we used white rice. Once we use what we have we are going to use brown rice in everything)
  • 1 cup grated carrots 
  • 1/2 an onion, diced 
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage 
  • salt and pepper, to taste 

Cook lentils. (3 cups water to 1 cup dried red lentils. Stove top, 15 to 20 minutes.) Preheat oven to 350°F. Oil a loaf pan and sprinkle sides and bottom with a tbsp of oats. Sautee onion and garlic in olive oil. Whisk egg and water until light and foamy. In a large bowl, combine the egg and lentils with the remaining ingredients. Press mixture into loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand 5 to 10 minutes before slicing. We served it with organic marinara that we had left over from something. I would definitely recommend some sort of tomato based sauce as it really adds to the flavor.

Overall this loaf was really, really good and we would totally make it again. Our only complaint is that it doesn’t really stay in loaf form. Once we cut into it it spread all over the plate (it was a loaf on a mission to take over the plate I guess) 

Recipe 2: Turnip Mashed Potatoes 
Neither J. or I had ever had a turnip before but we love mashed potatoes and we are trying to add more vegetables into our diet so I thought we should try this too. We were even able to find local, organic turnips. 

  • 1 large russet potato (We used what the grocery store calls a baking potato because they were the only ones sold individually and we did NOT need to purchase a couple pounds of potato.
  • 3 medium turnips 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 tablespoon butter 
  • Leftover wasabi (we didn’t have wasabi or horseradish so we added some milk and more butter, perhaps this would have made all the difference but we don’t think so)
  • salt and pepper, to taste 

Coat turnips with olive oil and bake in oven until tender. At the same time, boil the potato on the stove or in the microwave. When both are done, mash them together. Add butter, wasabi, salt and pepper. 

Apparently when you don’t bake them long enough they stay a bit crunchy, they also stay fibrous and have a stubborn streak of individuality that precluded us from fully integrating them with the potato. We suppose this is a good recipe but all we discovered is that we don’t like the taste or consistency of turnips so next time we plan on trying carrot mashed potatoes hopefully with better results.

Fear not though crappy turnips have not discouraged us from meatless meals we still plan on attempting one meal a week and since “one meal” usually lasts us a couple lunches and dinners we are being doubly or triply healthy. Go us

!If you have any recipes to recommend we are totally open to suggestions!

How much meat and dairy do you eat in a week? Have you cut down or eliminated your consumption of animal products because of the supposed toll on the environment? 

8 Comments leave one →
  1. February 29, 2008 2:25 am

    I really like katie — –‘s red lentil loaf. It’s super delicious. Also, I’m not a huge turnip fan — I’d choose just about any root over a turnip! beet, sweet potato, carrot, parsnip — but I have roasted them with a bunch of other roots and found their incredibly — unique? — flavor dimished slightly. :- )

    If you ever read the Cat Who books you’ll know that not everyone is a fan of turnips unique taste, but I am a huge fan of I Can Eat Anything Drowned In Ketchup philosophy and turnip fries are easy to adapt to those standards. 🙂

    I eat no meat and barely any dairy a week (sometimes I slip up and eat dark chocolate before reading the ingredients, etc. When I go out I don’t always ask about dairy in the bread products). I would say I eat 99.9% vegan. I did so because of my love for animals but also because of the impact on the environment. I have to question folks who eat “local cheese” sometimes because it really comes down to, was the grain and other foods in which the cow ate who produced the milk for the cheese local? ‘Cause otherwise the grain had to be transported from far away and that’s just as much environmental impact as eating non local grain (which I do).

    Anyway, long boring reply. 🙂


  2. February 29, 2008 3:33 am

    In one week I eat about 50% vegan, 40%-50% vegetarian and 0-10% deer or sustainably raised meat. And yes, I do this for the environment. I put recipes on my blog, if you’d like to try some other vegetarian recipes out. 🙂

  3. February 29, 2008 5:23 pm

    My wife and I have been trying to do one meatless meal a week for the past couple of months. However, we mostly stick to pasta, rice, egg dishes (scrambled eggs and toast…yes, for dinner!), and cheese dishes (quesadillas, grilled cheese sammiches). We’ve also tried to cut back how much meat is in the non-vegetarian meals that we make. Instead of having a chicken breast and side of rice, we’ll have rice with half a chicken breast chopped up and mixed throughout. While I’m not ready (and probably won’t ever be) to give up meat completely, I’ve found that I don’t mind having half as much as long as the meal is tasty and nutritious.

  4. becky permalink
    February 29, 2008 6:11 pm

    this looks like vomit.

  5. March 2, 2008 7:04 am

    How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman has been a big help to me.

  6. March 3, 2008 2:47 pm

    Turnips taste like dirt, no matter how much crap you mix in with ’em. For a long time in a lot of Europe, it was illegal for humans to eat turnips, since it was considered animal fodder. Shoulda remained animal fodder.

    I’ve been vegetarian since I was 11 (I’m 38 now). There were a few years of meat-eating in there, but I’ve gone back to no meat in recent years. What sent me back was learning about the true cost of meat from an envirnomental standpoint, as well as the horrific treatment of animals in factory farms. My husband eats meat outside of the house, but not much.

    We’re ovo-lacto vegetarian at home. We buy local eggs. I buy raw-milk, pastured cheese when I can find it. In the summer we grow most of our own vegetables, with the exception of potatoes, onions and garlic. Year round, what vegetables we do buy, we buy from the local farmer’s market. I do relent to organic canned tomatoes in the winter, but have decidedly mixed feelings about it!

    About 20 years ago I dedicated myself to eating real, unprocessed food. Now that the “real and local” food movement is in full flower, I couldn’t be happier about it. I hope it sticks. Unfortunately, Big Ag and the food lobbyists are fighting hard against locally grown food, and they will continue to win the big battles.

    The one battle they would be powerless against is backyard gardens. That’s my fervent hope- that more and more people simply grow as much of their own food as possible and cut out the industrial middle man altogether.

  7. ruralaspirations permalink
    March 3, 2008 5:29 pm

    I’m actually surprised that you are able to eat meat six days a week. Don’t get me wrong, I love my meat! But it does take a toll on the grocery bill. Also, I don’t like to buy “unethical” meat, and that means it’s even more expensive. We try to eat meat only about once or twice a week at most. I hear it is more environmentally friendly to eat less meat as well, since raising animals uses up more energy than growing veggies. I wonder, though, about animals raised naturally on small farms (which is where we get our beef from) and how that differs from commercially-raised animals.

    Oh, I don’t like turnips either! 🙂

  8. March 8, 2008 1:42 am

    I went vegan a few years back when I read about the environmental costs (and animal costs especially factory farming) of eating meat. I turned back to eating meat late last year when I read about humane ways of raising animals…but my time as a vegan must have changed something in me because I just don’t like the texture of meat (and fish) products anymore. So we’re now vegetarians and eat humanely grown eggs and lotso cheese. However, when we’re served non-vegetarian meals at parties and other get-togethers, I just shut up and eat the meal.

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