blissful eats with tina jeffers: Sunchoke, turnip and citrus salad

Have you ever asked yourself what your desert island food would be?  You know I always thought it would be something like, pizza or ice cream but if I were being honest with myself it would be some variation of a salad.  I go through periods where I feel like it’s too much trouble to take the time to prepare but it couldn’t be easier once you prep whatever vegetables you want to include.  Salads are so versatile, never leave you feeling bloated and weighed down and are a great way to make sure you get a good amount of fruits and vegetables into your diet.

Some days I do get stuck in a rut and this is a salad that definitely steps outside the normal iceberg lettuce, tomato and cucumber salad I grew up eating.   Sunchokes have a crisp texture and a sweet, nutty flavor they are actually the root of a particular kind of sunflower and are a great ingredient to add to your kitchen.  They can be roasted whole without peeling, mashed into a puree or thinly sliced and added to you favorite salad.  Baby turnips can be difficult to find so if you can’t locate them you can make the salad without them or some jicama would make a nice substitution. 

The one thing that I am constantly amazed at it the staggering amount of bottled salad dressing available at the market.  I have never found one that I prefer over making my own and it is so easy and economical to whip up a simple vinaigrette and it will always have better flavor than anything you can purchase at the store.  I always keep a few bottles of good quality vinegars in my pantry and invest in a high quality bottle of olive oil that I keep just for salads. 


My goal this month is to eat a salad at least one meal a day to see how I feel and hopefully shed a few pounds, I’ll let you know how it’s going.  Be sure to visit me at for more unique salad ideas!

Sunchoke, turnip and citrus salad

Serves 4




¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbsp. sherry vinegar

1 tbsp. lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


4 sunchokes, peeled and very thinly sliced

1 cucumber, peeled and sliced

1 bunch baby turnips, peeled and very thinly sliced

1 cup Italian parsley

1 orange, peeled and cut into segments



In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, lemon juice and garlic to make a smooth vinaigrette.  Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste.


In a large bowl add sunchokes, cucumber, turnips, parsley and oranges, add the vinaigrette and toss gently to combine.  Season with salt and pepper  to taste.