Mary's Veggie Garden

December 16, 2011

Preparing Kohlrabi for Cooking

Filed under: Gardening,Kohlrabi,Vegetables — marysveggiegarden @ 6:51 pm

Kohlrabi is a rather unusual looking plant – like a vegetable flying saucer. Despite its strange appearance it is easy to grow and makes a tasty vegetable side dish. Here are some tips to prepare kohlrabi for cooking.

Harvest kohlrabi at the correct time

I grow kohlrabi from transplants. My spring transplants are ready for harvest at the date computed by adding the days to maturity to the date of transplanting.  Harvest within a couple of weeks of their mature date. When left in the summer garden, kohlrabi continues to enlarge, eventually developing a woody, fibrous center or cracking open.

Kohlrabi 'Kolibri' from my root cellar

Fall kohlrabi transplants grow much more slowly. I started transplants 7/17, transplanted into the garden 8/15 and harvested from late October through November. Growth slows in the cold weather and there is very little danger of turning woody.

This kohlrabi was  harvested in mid-November. I cut off the leaves and piled the kohlrabi into a loosely covered plastic bucket in my root-cellar. The stumps of the leaf stems dried up and fell off in storage  leaving the white scars.

Kohlrabi usually develops some tough fibers in the base, extending up into the skin from the stem. There may also be some tough fibers in the skin below each leaf. The skin also gets tough during cooking.

In the Kitchen

1) If your kohlrabi has leaves, remove them by pulling down. This will remove any tough fibers in the skin below the leaf. Leaves are edible and can be used in soups or stew.

2. Cut a thick slice from the base and discard.

3. Peel

3) Peel, working from the base towards the top. Insert the edge of the knife blade about 1/8″ – 1/4″ then pull. (This is a bit like peeling a banana, where you hold the peel against the blade with your thumb.)  Discard the peels.

Grate, dice, slice, or julienne the bulb. Use raw in a salad or slaw, or add to soup, stew, or a stir-fry.

Some growing tips


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