There was a time in my life when I wasn’t so keen on using butter. I’d associated the velvety, golden stuff with unhealthiness, and when combined with thinking I had to fit into this particular mold of a woman—or so I thought—I avoided it at all costs.
Entering my late 20s, I’m embracing butter. And I’m embracing a balanced diet instead of the “mold,” pants size or any other poor ideal I thought I had to maintain in my early 20s. Balance, to me, is having pizza one or two nights each week, then having a hearty salad, roasted veggies or some other healthy-ish dish, like these pan-seared turnips with polenta. At the end of the day, balance looks different to everyone, and I’ve decided I’m making friends with butter.
This dish developed like most of our recipes—from our CSA box. With just two more weeks left in our CSA with New Earth Farm, I’m savoring every last item.
Giant purple top turnips, much like radishes in that they’re sharp in flavor when raw, yet almost sweet and more supple when cooked, are pan-seared in butter. Once tamed from the butter, the turnips corral around sautéed red mustard greens offering a peppery punch of their own along with Full Quiver Farm’s spicy sausage and homemade polenta. The key to this dish? Good. Quality. Butter. We used Kerrygold butter, but I am on the hunt for local butter if you have suggestions.
What’s great about this recipe is that you can absolutely substitute the sausage for a meat alternative (or even a fried egg), use kale, collards or other hearty green, add cheese to the polenta and even use those store-bought polenta logs. Though, I promise the stovetop polenta is worth the wait.
Pan-Seared Turnips with Polenta
I N G R E D I E N T S
3 turnips, cut into bite-sized wedges
2 cups sausage, chopped
Couple handfuls red mustard greens, torn into bite-sized pieces
2 cups dry polenta, cooked to package instructions (I used Bob’s Red Mill.)
Optional toppings: cheese, crushed red pepper
M E T H O D
In a skillet on medium heat, add a few tablespoons of butter. Add the turnips, season with salt and pepper and pan-sear until a nice, golden brown crust forms on each side, about 8 minutes flipping occasionally. Set aside.
Add the sausage to the same skillet and cook until cooked through for about 8 minutes. Set aside.
Next, add the red mustard greens to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Quickly sauté for about 2 minutes, then remove the skillet from heat.
Assemble each bowl with a ladle of polenta in the bottom, then add the turnips, sausage and red mustard greens. Garnish with cheese or even crushed red pepper, if you wish.