1½ lbs. turnips1 large onion, cut into lg. pieces 4 lg. garlic cloves, peeled 2 thyme sprigs, or 1/2 tsp. dried 2 Tbsp. olive or sunflower seed oil 2 c. milk 1-2 Tbsp. butter 1-2 pinches sugar 2 tsp. minced tarragon
Preheat oven to 425. Peel turnips, then chunk 2/3 of them into roughly 1” pieces. Set remainder aside. Simmer storage turnips in boiling salted water for 3 min., then drain. Fresh turnips w/ greens needn’t be parboiled. Toss turnip chunks with onion, garlic, thyme, oil, & 1/2 tsp. salt, then put them in a lg. baking dish in a single layer. Bake for 45 min. to an hour, shuffling the veggies every 15 min. so they brown on all sides. Transfer to a soup pot. Add 1/2 c. water to roasting pan, scrape up carmelized juices, & pour them into the pot. Season with 1/2 tsp. salt, add the milk & 2 c. water to veggies, & bring to a boil. Lower heat & simmer, covered, until turnips are tender, 20-25 min. Purée until smooth; return to pot. Season with salt to taste. The soup can be made ahead to this point. To finish, dice the remaining turnips into 1/2” cubes. Melt butter in a sm. skillet, add turnips, sprinkle with sugar, and cook over med. heat until golden, about 15 min. Season w/ salt and pepper and stir in most of tarragon. Ladle soup into bowls, spoon carmelized turnips into each one, garnish with the remaining tarragon , and serve.
Adapted from Vegetable Soups from Deborah Madison’s Kitchen by Deborah Madison