Friday, 22 January 2016

Rutabaga with Bacon, Mushrooms, & Onions

Finally, we grew some successful rutabaga last summer. It generally hasn't done well for us, because as a member of the brassica family it doesn't like our soil much, our soil contains worms that do like rutabaga just fine, and I am pretty terrible at thinning at the time of year when  things should be thinned.

Is there any vegetable that doesn't go well with bacon, mushrooms, and onions? Maybe? None I can think of off the top of my head. So no new culinary ground is being broken here, but that's okay. Nothing wrong with the tried and true. If there is any difficulty with this dish, it's that it contains enough bacon to make it too rich to be your usual side dish, but not quite enough to be a main dish. It makes an excellent breakfast or brunch, along with some toast, or serve it with simply cooked lean fish or chicken and a green vegetable for a more substantial meal.

4 to 6 servings
1 hour prep time

Rutabaga with Bacon, Mushrooms, & Onions

450 grams (1 pound) rutabaga
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 medium onions
200 grams (1/2 pound) bacon
100 grams (1/4 pound) button mushrooms
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon sweet Hungarian paprika
1/4 teaspoon rubbed savory or thyme

Peel the rutabaga and cut it into 3/4" dice. Put them in a pot with water to cover, and the salt, and bring to a boil. Boil steadily for about 30 minutes, until tender.

Meanwhile, peel and chop the onions. Chop the bacon into bite-sized pieces. Clean, trim, and slice the mushrooms.

Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat; it should cook quite slowly for about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. If it renders more fat than will nicely coat the bottom of the pan, drain some of it off. After 10 or 15 minutes, when the bacon is about two-thirds cooked, add the chopped onions and the mushrooms. Continue cooking slowly, stirring regularly, for another 10 minutes or so, until the bacon is quite done and so are the onions and mushrooms. If things look like they are cooking too fast, reduce the heat as needed.

When the rutabaga is tender, drain it well and add it to the pan of bacon, etc. Mix and mash it in fairly coarsely, and season with the pepper, paprika, and savory. You may wish to add a little more salt, but contemplate the nature of your bacon first. Heat through, and transfer to the serving dish.

Last year at this time I made Curried Squash Soup.

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