When the smoker is rolling, nothing is safe. In this case, the turnips went on the smoker filled with pork and peaches with no end result in mind. I knew that I loved turnips, but have never seen or heard of any good preparation for cold-smoked turnips. The texture is slightly less starchy than a potato and flavor slightly less peppery than a radish, but neither radish nor potato had obvious translatable applications to smoking.
It was not until I broke out the smoked weisswurst and longed for kraut to go alongside. I had smoked red onions which were later pickled, so why not try to sour smoked turnips. By this time, I had more beets, both golden and red, than I knew what to do with, so in lieu of pickling beets, I opted to sour them naturally with the smoked turnips. Making things easier was the shredding attachment on my food processor, which turned hours of work into minutes.
Once I had a bowlful of shredded smoked (and colorfully unsmoked) root vegetables, I added sea salt in a ratio of two teaspoons per pound of shredded veg, stirred vigorously, and tossed the whole colorful mess into a jar straight from boiling water. The next step I learned in my last souring attempt and it was to absolutely beat the tar out of the vegetables to release liquid. By the end of the day, the shredded veg were swimming in salty pink brine.
With three weeks of sitting out on the kitchen counter in its own brine, the turnips and beets had soured into sauerruben, but the major difference between the sauerruben that I have had in the past and this was the a fully soured sauerruben had the peppery and sour flavors in direct competition. In this iteration, the smokiness was most prominent and the sour, peppery flavors, while still present, played lesser roles.
After gifting some to a friend, I decided to add the radiantly pink, smokey, sour, crunchy pickle to Greek yogurt and a meat waffle. Yes, a meat waffle. No crappy burger between two waffles, but an actual waffle made from some uncased breakfast sausage that I had made. I had picked up a cast-iron waffle, erm, iron which works in the oven and over the range. In the tradition of sausage, kraut and sour cream, it delicious. I really love kielbasa and kraut with sour cream and this was similar. It was garlic-y sausage, but the smokey element came from the sauerruben instead of the sausage.