When they are boiled quite tender, squeeze them as dry as possible between two trenchers; put them into a sauce-pan; mash them with a wooden spoon, and rub them through a colander; add a little bit of butter; keep stirring them till the butter is melted and well mixed with them, and they are ready for table.
From The Cook’s Oracle by William Kitchiner MD New York, 1829
Comment: Turnips may be grown more for their greens than their roots nowadays, but in the 19th century they were at least as popular as parsnips, if not quite as universal as potatoes. “Trenchers” are slabs of flat bread, used since ancient times as edible dinner plates. In this situation it may be considerably easier to dry one’s turnips with a clean absorbent cloth. We would also think it easier to grate the turnips through a colander or similar device first, then do the mashing-with-butter routine in the pot after, but we must defer to Dr. Kitchiner’s expertise in the matter.