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Turnip, Cumin and Coriander Soup

The photos of the turnip are just to set the record straight on the whole turnip versus swede debate. These are turnips! Good old Scottish turnips. Nope, not a swede in sight!

So here is my, well let's just say Indian-style soup for Lisa and my entry for this month's No Croutons Required. This is a creamy, flavoursome soup with a kick, courtesy of the chilli powder. The vegetables can't be said to be traditional Indian fare, but I have given them a nice spicy flavour.

Turnip, Cumin and Coriander Soup

1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 cm piece fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 butternut squash, cubed
3 potatoes, cubed
1 large turnip, cubed
4 cups vegetable stock
1 large handful coriander, chopped
freshly ground black pepper

Saute the onion, garlic and ginger in the olive oil until softened, then add the spices and mix well. Add a good splosh of water, to prevent the vegetables from sticking, then add the butternut squash, potatoes and turnip. Cook for 10 minutes. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 20-30 minutes until the vegetables are cooked through, then whizz until smooth. Add the fresh coriander and season with black pepper. You may add salt it you wish, but sometimes vegetable stock is quite salty anyway.

This is quite a spicy soup. If you would like to cool it down a little serve with a spoonful of natural yoghurt.

Serves 6


  1. Nice job Holler! I would be sure to love this.

  2. Thanks Lisa :)

    I am looking foward to seeing the line-up. I am hoping there are dal soups in there. I bought a bag of toor dal with the intention of making some soup with it. That was before I had the overwhelming urge to make turnip soup.

  3. Mmm, sounds delicious! What fabulous flavors!

  4. My dear, yes, this is a turnip, but okay then, what's a swede!?!?!

    I think I hate both of them, by the way. However, you make it LOOK so good I'm tempted...

    PS - Sorry we've been utterly anti-social for ages; we plan to remedy that soon. xo

  5. Thanks Elyse :)

    Hi tanita, The swedes are the baby ones, although David at Book the Cook might argue the point!

    Don't worry, we have been busy too. I hear you are going to be even busier with a move. I hope it goes well and you can settle there for a while.

  6. The roundup should be up tomorrow Holler and there are some fantastic dal dishes in there.

    As for your turnip, I think we would call that a rutabaga in Canada, and the smaller ones with purplish, white skin would be called turnip.

  7. i never ate turnips til i lived in scotland so that is also what i call a turnip - but have never made turnip soup - looks like i should

  8. that's a great entry! i have a nice mulligatawny soup on my blog, if you want to use up those dals you bought.

    i'm hoping to see some salads in the round up - indians dont seem to make enough salad! :)

  9. This soup looks very tasty Holler.

    Here is some info on the humble 'Neep' (as wee scots would ken it)...

    For all your Neep needs

  10. I'm sure I read somewhere that the English call them Swedes because they originally came from Sweden. It's a turnip.
    Soup looks delish!!!!

  11. Rutabagas and turnips are considered different veggies here, according to our CSA farmer. But what do I know. I've never liked rutabagas but I LOVE turnips— especially cut into matchsticks and sautéed with their greens.

    This soup sounds great to me. I'm going to make it!

  12. The Swede is gross, and is yellowish inside. The Neep is whitish inside.

    The soup does sound like there's enough other stuff in there to drown out the flavor of the neep, though. :)

    Hope to see you soon. We've still got fruitcake in the freezer for you two....

  13. I love the top photo.

    I had a giant turnip in this weeks veg box and was wondering what to do with it. Now I know!

  14. Love the first turnip photo! The soup looks yummy.

  15. It's a really varied line-up this month Lisa. I am hovering between 3 favourites at the moment.

    Thank you for the back up on the Johanna :)

    Thanks Arundathi, that's great, I will go have a look at the recipe. By the way I love the Pineapple Salad you submitted for this month's No Croutons Required. It's brilliant :)

    Thanks for the links Slinkycat. Does this mean you are back, cooking and blogging again?

    Hi Lynn, I suppose I should have called them neeps really, being the good Scottish gal I am!

    Hope you enjoy it Andrea. Just adjust the chilli powder to suit your own taste. I made it quite hot for Graham, but I know not everybody likes such a kick.

    I think you have them back to front David. A Scottish turnip or neep is large and has a slightly yellowish flesh. You either love them or hate them!

    Keep the fruitcake on hold please, we will have a free weekend eventually, although it sounds like you may not, what with your move and everything.

    Thanks Jules. It is such a lovely colour isn't it?

    Thank you Ashley :)

  16. No idea what a swede is!! But I have confused turnips and rutabagas in the past. Whichever--the soup looks great!

  17. Looks delicious and healthy! My husband and I lived in London for a year and I remember my first introduction to the word "swede". It took me a while to figure out the American equivalent, which is rutabaga.

  18. I'd never thought of turnip, really!

  19. Holler, I don't know what this tastes like, but it looks and sounds delicious and even your photographs of the humble neep make it look like something strange and exotic.
    I work for the Gardening Scotland team and lots of the Show Gardens this year (the show runs from Friday, 29 May until Sunday, 31 May at The Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh) feature vegetables, but I don't think there's a turnip amongst them. However I know we've got Kohl Rabi and carrots, so the roots are represented.
    Wendy Barrie will be cooking in our Demonstration Kitchen and I'm going to post her recipes on our website later this week.
    She's going to be joined by the chefs who work at some or the major consulates in Edinburgh, so the food will also have an international flavour.
    What I've noticed working on the Show this year is that the gap between gardening and food has narrowed dramatically and I know that lots of people will be coming along this year because they want to 'grow their own'.
    Anyway, I better get back to work - with only nine weeks to go I'm putting in a Sunday shift - but I just wanted to say how much I enjoy your site.
    Keep cooking

  20. Love that picture.. I indeed thought it was some kinda purse when it was downloading!!

    Nice Soup Holler... We do eat a lot of Turnip in India, it used to be my grandpa's favorite vegetable. just boiled:-)

  21. Hi Dana, the language barrier can indeed be a barrier sometimes. Well until you get the hang of all the equivalents that is :)

    Hi A &N, it ws one of those browse along the vegetable stands kind of moments :)

    Hi Agnes, thanks for the heads up. It sounds like it will be a great event. You should post about it over at the UK Food Bloggers Association. Julia over at A Slice of Cherry Pie can help you with that.

    That is so funny Soma, I will have to have another look at the picture now :)

  22. Here's a Swede in sight! And no I'm not the least bit gross, or yellow inside, that DaviMack should have his mouth washed with soap...;)

    Soup sounds lovely.

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. Whoops, that was me!

    He he! Very funny Pia! That Davimack is a bad boy ;)

  25. Can you skip the butternut squash..? Or rwplcae with.. say carrots?

    1. Yes go ahead and use carrots. Soup is all about throwing in what you have and it'll still be delicious :)


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