Rooting a Rutabaga

This is my first time using rutabaga.  I always saw it in supermarkets and didn’t know what it was.  Until I got this beef stew recipe, I was really anxious to try it.  I found out that rutabaga is a root vegetable.  when I was a kid I was always wondering how people discovered root vegetables in the first place.  I mean they are not obvious as the root is underneath the soil.

I remembered asking my parents this exact question many years ago.  They told me a story about the hardship they went through during Khmer Rouge.  It was a horrible genocidal event that happened in Cambodia between 1976-1979.  Over 2 million people were killed and they were lucky to have survived such a near death event.  They were striped of freedom and forced to work in the rice fields for the government.  Food was only given to them if there were any leftovers from the harvest.  In other words, they were always hungry and had to look everywhere for edible things.  My father told me that he ate tree bark and plenty of roots just to survive.  He said I am sure that was how people discovered root vegetables!

After hearing the story, I felt really sad and scared at the same time.  The reason was because I thought events like this were ancient history.  I couldn’t believe how recent it was and my parents still came out this positive.  I couldn’t believe a simple root vegetable question has helped me dig up so much family history. This just goes to show that you really can’t judge a book by its cover.  Just like the root vegetables, you can never tell what you are going to get underneath.

Food Facts: 

  • Regular consumption of rutabaga increases milk production capacity, stamina and digestion.
  • Being an excellent source of vitamin C, rutabaga helps in reducing wheezing in asthma patients. Lack of vitamin C results in scurvy, which causes easy bruising. Consuming rutabaga considerably reduces the incidence of bruising.
  • Rutabagas are also known to reduce the risk of cataract formation and support the structure of capillaries.
  • An excellent source of potassium, rutabaga helps in decreasing stroke mortality. Potassium is also known to lower high blood pressure.
  • They are also recommended for people with problems of constipation.
Cooking Notes:
  • You can just use any type of root vegetables.  To save time, just chop them in advance.
  • This stew is also great for freezing, don’t forget to freeze it individually.

[gmc_recipe 3046]

Leave a Reply