When I searched for its English translation, I found several names for this strange vegetable. Some of them are jerusalem artichoke(does it have a relation with Jerusalem?), sunchoke, sunroot and earth apple, but I loved topinambur the most among these. I don’t know where this word is coming from, but I love the sound in it. When I first read it aloud, I thought it sounded like the meaningless words used by illusionists. We call it ‘yer elması’ in Turkish, meaning earth apple.
Although they have a very ugly texture, I find topinamburs so cute with their craggy structure and different color. Despite its unusual look, it is a great source of glucose and minerals. And it is generally advised to people who can’t gain weight as it has a fattening effect. I wasn’t aware of this until my hubby bought some a few years ago. Yes, I had heard its name several times before, but hadn’t tasted until then. I didn’t have any idea about how to eat it. I didn’t even know if it is in the category of vegetable or fruit. He grabbed a knife and cut one of the topinamburs, peeled it and ate it cutting into slices. He was eating it just like an apple. When I got a bite of it, I felt itwas so much like raw potato. Then I decided to try cooking it in the same way with celery root.
I must also say that it is not so easy to chop topinamburs. It may sound nonsense, but I definitely feel that I’m chopping a living thing when I see some pinkish lines inside it which look like blood vessels. That’s why it is hard to chop them.
5 minPrep Time
35 minCook Time
40 minTotal Time
- 4 cups topinambur,chopped
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- Half lemon
- Half orange
- 1 sugar cube
- Salt to taste
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Celery leaves
- 1/2 cup water
- Put the chopped topinamburs in a bowl and squeeze half lemon on it. This will prevent the topinamburs from blackening.
- Saute the onions and carrots with olive oil in a pot. Then put the chopped topinamburs with the lemon juice, squeeze half orange.
- Add a sugar cube and salt and stir.
- Pour water after 5 minutes. Then cover the pot and lower the heat. Cook it until carrots and topinamburs get tender.
- Serve it with some celery leaves, either warm or cold.