Silken Turnip Soup 8.000

Mark Finkenstaedt for The Washington Post; Styled by Lisa Cherkasky; Tableware from Crate and Barrel

Nov 18, 2009

This soup is creamy-tasting without any cream or milk.

Make Ahead: The soup can be cooled, then covered and refrigerated 1 day in advance. Reheat, covered, over low heat on the stovetop.

Servings: 8

Yield: Makes about 2 1/2 quarts

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 medium onion, cut into thin slices (2 1/2 cups)
  • 4 medium turnips, peeled and cut into thin slices (1 1/2 pounds total)
  • 1 small (8 ounces) russet potato, peeled and cut into thin slices
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, or more to taste
  • 5 cups low-sodium chicken broth, preferably homemade, or more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup packed basil leaves, rolled and cut into thin strips (chiffonade), for garnish (optional)


Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Once it is foaming, add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until they have softened slightly.

Add the turnips, potato and salt; mix well. Cover and reduce the heat to low; cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender.

Add the broth and stir to combine; cook for 10 minutes, until heated through.

Remove from the heat; use an immersion (stick) blender to puree into a smooth soup. (Alternatively, puree the mixture in batches in a blender or food processor; if using a blender, remove the center knob of the lid and place a clean dish towel over the opening to prevent steam from escaping.)

Return the soup to the pot and place over medium-low heat. Add the nutmeg and stir to incorporate. Cook for 10 minutes, then taste; adjust the seasoning as needed. If the soup is too thick, use extra broth to achieve the desired consistency.

Divide among individual bowls; garnish with the basil, if desired. Serve warm.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from "The Gift of Southern Cooking," by Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock (Knopf, 2003).

Tested by Jane Black.

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