Thursday, July 05, 2007
K is for Kohlrabi
This is a vegetable that knows how to make an entrance. I saw them piled up in a basket which looked like a graveyard of old Sputniks. These long green antennae spring out of a smooth dome, the size of an orange. The name Kohlrabi derives from the German for cabbage-turnip, where they have been popular for thousands of years. They have had a few knocks along the centuries, being labelled cattle fodder. Now they're enjoying something of a revival.
I took tham home on the bus. I half expected them to climb out of my bag with their long green limbs and launch an invasion of planet earth. When I got them into my kitchen, the children were impressed. Anything that looks as if it is an alien extra from Doctor Who gets brownie points in our house.
The Kohlrabi is incredibly versatile. It may look a little scary but you can saute, steam, roast, bake, stirfry or simply grate it and eat it raw. The green leaves and gangly stems can be eaten as well, like any green. But some Kohlrabi fans claim that the real flavour of this vegetable only emerges when it is cooked. So we tried out a recipe from Helen at Linscombe Farm in Devon for Kohlrabi in carrot cream sauce. The Kohlrabi was soft and tasted sweet. Freddie's score was 7 out of ten.