Useful information

Turnip - an undeservedly forgotten food and medicine

Despite the availability of any seeds and the achievements of selection, the range of our vegetables is still quite small. Often the habit of the absence of a particular product in the diet interferes. We do not always use even what our ancestors loved and respected. Take the most common turnip, for example. It is far from being found in all vegetable gardens.

Homeland of the common turnip (Brassica rapa) - Mediterranean. It was introduced into culture 4 thousand years ago. Before all European nations, the Greeks began to grow turnips. However, they did not value her highly. When sacrifices were brought to the god Apollo, chard beets were carried in front on a silver platter, and a turnip afterwards on a pewter dish. Probably, the Greeks simply could not fully appreciate this vegetable due to the abundance of sun and lack of moisture - turnip prefers a temperate climate and sufficient moisture. But in our harsh climate, it was appreciated.

In every folk tale there is a dream: it is either a plane carpet, or living water, or rejuvenating apples, or so that “a big turnip grows - a big one”. Why did my grandfather want to grow a large turnip? To feed myself and my grandmother and granddaughter. Together with cabbage, it was the main vegetable until the 18th century and played the same role as potatoes now. Along the city walls of Veliky Novgorod, "turnips" stretched - plots with turnips. In lean years, when rye froze out, this vegetable replaced bread. It was the cheapest vegetable in Russia. Hence the saying: "Cheaper than a steamed turnip." Turnip in Russia was among the obligatory daily meals of both the common people and the nobility. It was eaten fresh, baked, boiled, steamed, used as a filling for pies, various complex dishes were prepared from it, kvass was made, and fermented like cabbage. Sometimes turnips were mixed into bread - such an admixture was considered better than quinoa, used in such cases.

Healthy turnip dishes: Okroshka on kefir with chard stalks, carrots and turnips, Cabbage soup with turnips, Quick sauerkraut with herbs and turnips, Soaked turnips with beets and pears, Canned vegetable salad with turnips, Stewed turnips with apples and anise, Baked vegetable assorted, Stuffed turnips, Turnip salad with currants, Chowder with turnips and tops, Shortcrust pastry pies with meat and vegetables.

Vitamin C is more than lemon

The root vegetable contains various minerals (potassium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron salts), B vitamins1, V2, B6, PP, pantothenic acid, carotene, carotenoids and anthocyanins, carbohydrates, proteins, organic acids, sterols, thiamine, essential oils. Some varieties have a higher sugar content than relatively sweet apples. Vitamin C in root crops is almost twice as much,than oranges, lemons. And turnip leaves contain more vitamin C and proteins than root crops. The presence of mustard oils gives turnips a peculiar taste and smell, and the presence of phytoncides gives bactericidal properties. The seeds contain fatty oil (33-45%) and a small amount of essential oil. Fatty oil includes unsaturated fatty acids (linolenic, linoleic, etc.).

From Avicenna to the present day

Avicenna called the turnip shaljam, noted that the juice of its root vegetable has a diuretic effect. Turnips are highly valued in dietary nutrition. Doctors recommend using it (especially fresh) for constipation, as a fortifying, vitamin and appetite-increasing remedy, especially in the winter-spring period. Raw turnips are slightly bitter. To remove bitterness, root vegetables are poured with boiling water before stewing or baking.

In the past, turnips have been used as a mild sedative - a glass of broth at night. From mashed fresh turnips and goose fat, an ointment against frostbite was prepared. In traditional medicine of Russia, poultices were made from the gruel of boiled root crops for arthritic pain in the joints, and baths were made from liquid decoctions.

Turnip juice, squeezed out after rubbing on a grater and boiled with sugar, was used for scurvy. In addition, turnip has been widely used as a laxative, antitussive, diuretic, and sedative. Inside, it was recommended to use juice or root crops for acute laryngitis, bronchial asthma; for rinsing with toothache. Steamed turnip juice with sugar or honey was used for colds and coughs. In ancient Russian herbalists, root vegetable decoction and boiled turnip juice were recommended to be used for severe cough, asthma, acute laryngitis, for colds damage to the vocal cords, insomnia, palpitations. The broth was prepared at the rate of 2 tablespoons of chopped root vegetables in a glass of boiling water. Cooked for 15 minutes, drank a quarter of a glass 3 times a dayor a glass at night.

In case of toothache, they rinsed the mouth with a decoction of turnips.

Turnip is contraindicated in inflammation of the stomach and intestines, in inflammatory processes in the kidneys, liver.