You say potato…

A turnip, a haggis and a swede
From left to right: A turnip, a haggis and a swede.

This week Jane and I ordered our Tesco groceries online and had them delivered to the door on Sunday afternoon.

Something that we eat quite regularly, being good Scots, is the traditional Scottish meal of haggis, neeps (turnips) and tatties (potatoes). So imagine our surprise when our turnip arrived and it was half the size of the haggis (see above).

It turns out what we’ve been eating all these years is actually haggis, swede and tatties. I found the following on the World Wide Electric InterWeb:

There is often confusion about the differences between the turnip and the Swede. The Swede ‘Brassica napobrassiac‘ is from Sweden (unsurprisingly) and was introduced to the UK as the Swedish turnip and the name later became shortened to Swede.

To add to the confusion the Swede ‘is often known as a turnip or neep in Scotland and the turnip goes by the same name. Indeed the word turnip comes from the Scottish word neep. The Americans however call the Swede a rutabaga, which comes from the Swedish word — rotabagge. However in some parts of the States the Rutabaga is called the yellow turnip and the turnip is known as the white turnip.

I hope that’s made everything much clearer now, for everybody.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 52 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master at Safeguard Global; latterly at Sky and Vision/Cegedim. Former web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and previously warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

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