Our friends at Johnson’s Backyard Garden have been harvesting Kohlrabi, and we thought we’d send out a note about this fantastically versatile vegetable. Kohlrabi’s origin in nature is the same as that of cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collard greens, and Brussels sprouts: they are all bred from, and are the same species as the wild cabbage plant (Brassica oleracea). Kohlrabi has a taste and texture that is similar to cabbage hearts and broccoli stems, but milder and sweeter.
Kohlrabi stems are surrounded by two distinct fibrous layers, that don’t soften very much when cooked. It’s best to peel these layers away during preparation. Here are a few ideas we like for using Kohlrabi. We’ve included Kohlrabi in our latest organic vegetable mix, as well as in a stand-alone product. We’ve packed this veggie mix with organic sweet potatoes, organic red carrots, organic purple top turnip and of course, organic kohlrabi. It’s a great way to introduce seasonal vegetables into your diet and not to mention it certainly livens up a dinner plate!
1. Sliced thin and eaten raw. When raw, kohlrabi is slightly crunchy and mildly spicy, like radishes. You can toss them in a salad or eat them on their own with a little olive oil and some sea salt.
2. Roasted. When roasted the flavor of Kohlrabi sweetens and mellows. I like to roast Kohlrabi tossed with a mild olive oil and finish it with a splash of lemon juice and sea salt.
3. Steamed. This is kind of a simple suggestion because Kohlrabi can be used in many dishes steamed. You can add steamed Kohlrabi into frittatas, stir-fries, pasta dishes, or puree with butter and cream or coconut milk. Experiment with a variety of spices to find a dish that works for you.
4. Stuffed. Kohlrabi can be steamed and hollowed out to make a vessel for stuffing. Any combination of vegetables or meat and vegetables can be used to make a great appetizer or side. I like to stuff Kohlrabi with ground veal, pine nuts and parsley and moisten with a veal stock reduction for a nice appetizer.
5. In soup. Kohlrabi works well in creamy, pureed soups with mild spices so that its sweet flavor isn’t overwhelmed.