Smoky swede/ rutabaga mash- vegan

I found some flat-leaved parsley in the garden; it makes for an attractive and tasty garnish

I have a tough job on my hands; I'm attempting to convert my husband and kids from swede-haters to swede lovers! I was a swede-hater too myself until I was in my late teens (I blame the disgusting 1970's school dinners!) but now I like its mustard-y pungency, its delicate colouring and the way it goes tender and melt-in-the-mouth when you cook it. 
It is a healthy food, like all members of the cruciferous family, containing calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, manganese and natural sugars. (For more info on swedes follow this link to a great site.)  It does not deserve its reputation as only fit for animal-feed. Swede is also a very cheap Winter vegetable in the UK, so well worth a try. I've managed to slip a swede into our shopping trolley a couple of times, but I've had only limited success including it in soups and stews as it gets carefully picked out! Hmmm...Time for a re-think....
This recipe easily serves 6 as a side dish to a roast dinner, either nut roast or seitan.

1 swede (mine weighed 1kg unpeeled)
1/2 tab soy sauce/ tamari/liquid aminos
seasalt and coarse black pepper to taste
1 tab light olive oil or similar oil (higher smoke points are safest for cooking)
2 -21/2 tsps smoked paprika, depending on quality and freshness (the sweet kind rather than hot)

  • Peel and dice the swede. Peeling is essential here because it won't soften enough to mash unless you do peel it.
  • Steam the diced  swede until very soft.
  • Add the oil and seasonings and mash until really, really smooth. It's worth putting in the effort to get it almost puree-like.
  • Adjust the seasonings if necessary, then, if you are not going to serve it up straight away, cover and keep warm until needed.
And the verdict from my swede-hating family this Sunday lunchtime? Out of seven people, 5 ate it. Result! :) Just the two youngest to persuade now.... anyone got any more swede ideas?


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