It’s not commonplace in my area supermarkets, but I keep an eye out for it. The leaves and stems can be used like you would other tough greens: braised with garlic and onion, or in soup and stew. I have tried steaming and roasting the peeled, quartered bulbs but wasn’t impressed. However, I love them shredded in a simple slaw, with carrot, onion, and red bell pepper. The shreds stay crunchier than cabbage, and the flavor is similar to cauliflower with a hint of apple. Most recently, I added celery seed and freezedried apple chips. The dressing was mostly apple cider vinegar, used to slosh out the dregs of bottled poppyseed dressing, plus some rice vinegar to cut the acidity of the cider vinegar. If you’ve never used kohlrabi, give it a try!
Kohl rabi is probably the least enjoyed vegetable in the house. Unlike Brussels sprouts, which I have an active dislike over, I just find kohlrabi bland, boring, flavourless. When we used to get a weekly organic vegetable box, there would be periods when it appeared week after week. We tried quite a number of recipes and none were particularly enjoyable. It was actually a factor in us deciding to stop buying the box.
Back in 2016, it appeared in a starter at a Michelin 2* restaurant - a salad of crab, thinly sliced pear and thinly sliced kohlrabi. Nope, still boring.
I’ll be watching this thread with interest in the hope of rustling up more enthusiasm for kohlrabi. My grandparents prized it and I wish I enjoyed it as much.
Kohlrabi can be a frequent part of summer farm (CSA) shares here as well, along with the ubiquitous kale.
Slaw and very thin slices of raw kohlrabi in salads are the most agreeable for us.
Roasted and mashed I have tried, and they did not win me over.
I seldom saw this cabbage turnip in the market here. I pulled out my potager book, the 3-star chef Alain Passard has a simple soup recipe.
In a saucepan, cover the roughly chopped cubes of kohlrabi with their skin and branches, add some salted butter and a dash of hazelnut oil. When the kohlrabi becomes soft, mix everything and add a touch of mustard à la ancienne and, if necessary, correct the texture with a drop of hot milk to obtain a silky texture. Serve with some croutons rubbed with French tarragon and black pepper. He suggested a silky mustard from Orleans, France if possible.
It is suggested to get young ones, around 5-6 cm with maximal taste. He compared the flavours to green apple, hazel nut and a mild version of artichoke. Getting too big, they lost the flavours and become “meaty” and tasteless.
I just like it raw and snack on it with a creamy dip. We ate plenty as kids. My mom grew this giant variety that is ENORMOUS. It looks like a mutant. I’ve also grilled it, too.
Lightbulb goes on! I wonder how much difference the size of the kohlrabi makes.
I’ll have to try getting my hands on smaller ones this summer so I can find out.
I picked up a rather big one at an upstate NY farmers market several years ago, it was my first time trying it. I roasted it along with additional root vegetables and loved it, it was mild and sweet, I can eat them like I eat an apple and have experimented making chips ( of course) in my smart oven, they look exactly like the turnip chips I’ve done pictured below … highly recommend
Interesting. I’d usually think that older, bigger vegetables have more flavour than “baby” ones but if it’s the reverse with kohlrabi, I’m happy to look out for them and give them another, absolutely final, try.
That sounds so appealing to me … TY
Maybe it’s just the nature of the beast … I have issues with turnips, some I love and some I find to be horrid, no idea how to tell which will be good.
Could be. I feel the same as you about turnips. Those I am a fan of, but sometimes I encounter a dud that’s too bland and/or excessively fibrous for my liking.
I’ve never seen any of that size. In my area kohlrabi is good sized - like a large beet or turnip. Even when buying direct from the farmers it has been quite big! No idea of this is due to the variety, regional preference or simply lack of knowlege regarding the young ones taste difference.
I have, at whole foods believe it or not
My Whole Foods locations revamped their produce several years ago* and now have much less variety. They greatly increased the selection of prepped/ready to cook produce like the noodle cuts, etc. Sprouts now has the largest variety followed by the larger of the Asian groceries.
*Prior to Amazon purchasing them.
I like it just as gracieggg does. I also have pickled kohlrabi using a basic dill pickle recipe and really liked it that way too.
It’s a common veg in German speaking countries and the BeNeLux. Around here it’s usually about the size of orange or grapefruit. I wouldn’t buy any bigger than that, too much fibrous skin to peel. It tastes, to me, like broccoli stem (which I also eat), crunchy and fresh. Being so mild all kinds of spices can be used to make it more interesting.
How I normally use Kohlrabi:
- Raw in salad (either grated or cut into matchsticks)
- In stir-fries and soups
- Braised in cream and bouillon (particularly typical in German speaking countries)
- Gratin (often with potatoes)
I saw on a German food/recipe forum some people make pseudo fries/chips with it. “Schnitzel” is also a possibility. Hollow out the middle, fill with mince and roast is another one. Some use it in place of certain carbs or meat.
The only time I’ve had kohlrabi is in Chinese sticky rice or certain stir fries. I can’t say I’m averse to the food, but I’ve never attempted to cook with it, and haven’t felt compelled to try to. I see this at every Chinese market I’ve been to. If it has a nice crunchy texture, it would like it would work well in slaws or salads and might open up new possibilities. As it is now, it’s just a nice, mildly sweet veggie whose taste is primarily from other savory ingredients.
The only size I ever see (Boston area) is about 3-3.5" ( 8cm) diameter. I imagine the larger they are, the thicker the peel. I don’t peel broccoli stems as they soften when cooked, so I wouldn’t care about kohlrabi peel if I were cooking it, but having roasted them once, I know that I prefer them raw. Fighting with an unpeeled one on a mandolin is asking for a slip of the hand, and sutures.
I only like the stem part of the broccoli
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