Rutabagas (also knows as swedes) are generally bigger than their close relatives, turnips, and can be brown, yellow, or white, with yellow flesh. The firm flesh of rutabagas has
a strong mustardlike taste that mellows and becomes sweeter when cooked.
Rutabagas are generally best during the late autumn and early winter. Roasting these roots brings out their distinctive sweetness. They can also be added to soups and stews, puréed or mashed, or baked into a simple side dish.
Choose rutabagas that are unblemished and firm. Choose large roots that are heavy for their size.
Rutabagas and turnips will keep for several weeks in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place.
Rutabagas should be peeled and trimmed with a paring knife, and then sliced or cut into chunks.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cooking from the Farmers’ Market, by Tasha DeSerio & Jodi Liano (Weldon Owen, 2010).