Louisiana Eats!
6:30 pm
Wed February 29, 2012

Here a Chef, There a Chef, Everywhere a Chef

Chef Phillip Lopez chats about his avant-garde approach to cooking and author Kit Wohl talks about her new book that profiles 25 years of James Beard Award-winning chefs.

Turnip and Turnip Greens Soup by Alice Waters (Serves 4 to 6)

From The James Beard Foundation’s Best of the Best,

A 25thAnniversary Celebration of America’s Outstanding Chefs

2 1/2 pounds young turnips with greens, washed

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 yellow onion, thinly sliced

1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

2 quarts chicken stock

2 ounces prosciutto or smoked bacon, diced

1 bay leaf

1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil, for garnish

Parmesan cheese, grated, for garnish

  1. Trim the turnips, reserving the leaves.  Peel the turnips unless very small and tender.  Cut them crosswise into thin slices and reserve.
  2. In a non-reactive saucepan over low to medium heat, combine the oil, butter, and 1 tablespoon water.  Add the onion and garlic.  Sauté until translucent.  Add the turnips and cook until soft, approximately 4 minutes.  Add the stock, prosciutto, bay leaf, thyme, and season with salt and pepper.  Cover and simmer over low heat until the turnips are very tender, about 1 hour.  Working in batches in a blender or food processor, puree the mixture until smooth.
  3. Bring a small stockpot or large saucepan two-thirds full of salted water to a rolling boil.  Blanch the turnip greens by boiling until tender, about 30 seconds; immediately plunge them into ice water.  The leaves should be tender but still bright green.  Puree the greens with a little of the soup.
  4. Ladle the soup into serving bowls.  Drizzle the blended turnip greens on top, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, and garnish with Parmesan.

NOTE:  Water or vegetable stock may be substituted for the chicken stock and the prosciutto omitted for a meatless version of this soup.

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