Monday, September 19, 2011

Turnip Greens

I smelled the rain before it started rattling the metal roof. I've been watching the radar the last few days so I knew it was coming.
Yesterday I broke up a piece of the garden so today I sowed a thick patch of turnip and mustard seeds.
I think turnip greens in the fall are part of my DNA. We've eaten turnip greens and cornbread for as long as I can remember.
Most people go by the cool nights, or the color of the leaves, but to me, autumn arrives when we have our first meal of turnip greens.
With the gentle rainfall, the seeds should grow like kudzu. For those of you who don't know about kudzu, it's a plant sent over from Japan, that's found its home in the American South.
There's an old joke around that goes like this -- Do you know how to plant kudzu?  Throw the seeds down and RUN!!!
With any luck, we should be munching on greens and cornbread for supper in mid October, and I can finally report, that autumn has arrived here in Empire, Alabama.


  1. Anonymous10:11 PM

    I am at teh stage where I ma gratefull for rain.Also sawing digfferent things and this will be ongoing job:)Good luck:)

  2. Autumn is when the soups and stews are on the stove and warm bread in the oven. But I'm willing to wait for a month or so for that to happen.

  3. What an enjoyable read. I've never eaten turnip greens but after your enthusiastic and wonderful description of them, I'd love to tuck into some myself. I have eaten cornbread (many years ago) and loved it. Your description of smelling the approaching rain and the reference to the sound it makes on the tin rook...wonderful! And took me back to my childhood in Zimbabwe (then S. Rhodesia) when I could smell the approaching rain. I almost felt I was right there. Kudzu? Another thing with which I am unfamiliar, but what a plant! I had to laugh at that old saying you quoted, too. Sounds like the inspration for Jack's beanstalk. Perhaps it was actually kudzu!

  4. Oops! That should be TIN ROOF!

  5. Thank you for the "Stop Sign"! The last couple of years have had winter barge in earlier than previous years - taking away that much needed time for enjoying fall. Seeing the first few leaves fall from the peach tree during a storm last week has had me in a real funk. Winter is no friend of mine. I'm the least bit enthused about it's arrival this year. Those little moments such as yours shared here... a great help!

  6. One day I will eat cornbread :-)

  7. You're giving me a hankerin' for some greens and corn bread! Since I don't have a place to plant them, maybe I won't have to wait so long. Along with cool nights and the smell of rain, I'm thinking of that welcoming aroma of greens cooking on the kitchen stove with corm bread in the oven!

  8. Looks like you're trying to camoflage that vine as a truck.

  9. My Mother-in-law was from the South and she made the best greens...I miss her and her delish cooking. It's fun to hear how the season of fall is celebrated in so many different ways. However it's sliced, fall is my fav!

  10. Lovely. When my daughter lived in Puerto Rico they had tin roofs and when the rain would come down it was LOUD - but I loved it. You're a lucky man living where you do.

  11. Thanks all for your kind comments.
    Jilda also cooks turnips like potatoes and when they're done, you break them open and put on salt and butter.
    I can't wait till those greens are ready!
    @ Sarah -- you've never had cornbread? If you ever come to the states, swing by our house and have you some cornbread.
    @ Charles -- I recommend you move to where you can have you a turnip green patch :)
    @ Grandpappy, you have no idea !
    @ Karen, we do feel blessed.
    Again, thanks all.


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