Hot Turnip Greens and Tasso Dip - Ashland-Belle Helene
PREP TIME: 1 hour
MAKES: 5-6 cups

Though turnip, mustard and spinach greens were often cooked as vegetables in South Louisiana, it wasn't common for them to be used in any other fashion. Duncan Kenner, builder of Ashland, loved turnip greens and when he combined them with the tasso of the Germans from St. Charles Parish, this appetizer emerged.


  • 1 bunch fresh turnip greens
  • 1-10 ounce package chopped turnips greens
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup diced garlic
  • 1/2 cup minced tasso ham
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp grated orange rind
  • 1 cup béchamel sauce
  • 1-6 ounce package garlic cheese spread
  • dash of Worcestershire Sauce
  • salt and cracked pepper to taste
  • Louisiana Gold Pepper Sauce to taste

If tasso is unavailable in your area, you may wish to substitute with ham, bacon or heavy smoked sausage. If using fresh turnip greens, wash them well and rinse at least twice. Peel the spine from the leaf and chop. Boil in lightly salted water until tender. Remove, drain and reserve one and a half cups of greens. If using frozen, cook according to package directions, drain and set aside. In a heavy bottom black iron skillet, melt butter over medium high heat. Add onions, celery, bell pepper and garlic. Sauté three to five minutes or until vegetables are wilted. Add tasso and mushrooms and continue to cook an additional three to five minutes. Add turnip greens and orange rind, blend well into seasoning mixture and place all ingredients from the skillet into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process until smooth. Return the ingredients to the skillet and combine with bechamel sauce, cheese and Worcestershire Sauce. Stir constantly until mixture is well blended and cheese is thoroughly melted. Season to taste using salt, pepper and Louisiana Gold. This dip should be served hot with a basket of garlic croutons, crackers or vegetable sticks.

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