I heard it on the radio once that there is no other country in the world growing and eating as much kohlrabi as Germany. Could be the reason why the German name is also used in English. I believe this to be true, I lived in four countries until now and nowhere have I seen as much kohlrabi as here. You can buy it anywhere, anytime, it is growing in every vegetable garden you see, you can get it in green or in violet and there are lots and lots of recipes starring kohlrabi.
I think it is time that kohlrabi conquered the rest of the world, it is really a wonderful vegetable. When eaten raw (my favorite way of eating it) it is sweet and very crunchy and fresh, a bit like radish but milder and very much sweeter, a mixture between radish and cabbage, I would say.
When cooked the taste becomes more delicate, the freshness of kohlrabi is replaced by a wonderful tenderness, the sweetness remains but more subtle, gentler. I think cooked kohlrabi needs to be paired with stronger flavors, otherwise the finished dish might be too delicate, maybe quite a bit bland.
These recipes do pair kohlrabi with stronger flavors. The first option gets its taste from the salty, savory bacon, the second from the onions, crème fraiche and goat’s cream cheese. I liked it both ways, but the first version does have a special place in my heart, it is such a nice, tasty way of using leftover mashed potatoes. I always seem to have leftover mashed potatoes (or rice), I never seem to manage to find the right portion size. It rarely happens with noodles though… weird.
You will have to cook the kohlrabies in vegetable broth prior to stuffing and baking them. When tender, you will have to scoop out some of the flesh to make place for the stuffing. Do not throw away the vegetable broth and the scooped out kohlrabi flesh. You can add some more kohlrabi or/ and other vegetables to the broth the next day and make a wonderful soup. And if your kohlrabi happens to still have some nice looking leaves attached to it when you buy it, keep the leaves and throw them in this soup as well.
You can choose only one of the stuffings if you wish. In this case double the quantities for the chosen stuffing.
- 4 medium kohlrabies
- 2 liter vegetable broth
- 250 g/ 9 oz potatoes (or use leftover mashed potatoes or leftover cooked potatoes)
- 50 g/ 1.6 oz bacon (see note)
- 3 tablespoons Parmesan, divided
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped spring onions
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
- 1 egg yolk
- 150 g/ 5.3 oz cherry tomatoes
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped spring onions
- 2 heaped tablespoons goat's cream cheese
- 2 heaped tablespoons crème fraiche
- Bring the vegetable broth and another pot of salted water to a boil. In the meantime peel and halve the kohlrabies, peel and chop the potatoes into small cubes. Cook the kohlrabi halves in the vegetable broth for about 20-30 minutes until cooked through but still firm to the bite (they definitely should not fall apart). Take them out of the broth and let them cool down a bit, so that you will be able to touch them without burning your fingers. In the same time cook the potatoes in the salted water until tender, than drain the potatoes and let cool down a bit as well. Place them in a bowl and mash them.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius/ 390 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Chop the bacon into small pieces and fry them gently until nicely crisped. Place them in the bowl containing the mashed potatoes. Chop the spring onions, give 2 tablespoons of onions to the bacon and potatoes. Add 1 tablespoon of the grated Parmesan, the chives and the egg yolk to the potatoes, mix well and adjust the taste with salt and pepper.
- For the second stuffing, halve the cherry tomatoes, discard the seeds and dry the inside of the tomatoes with kitchen paper. Chop the tomatoes very finely, place them in a second bowl together with the rest of the chopped spring onions, cream cheese and crème fraiche. Adjust the taste with salt and pepper.
- Scoop some of the flesh from the kohlrabi halves until they resemble nests. Set the flesh aside and use them to make a soup for instance. Place the scooped kohlrabies halves into a baking form. Fill four of the halves with the first stuffing and the other four halves with the second stuffing.
- Sprinkle the stuffed kohlrabies with the remaining grated Parmesan.
- Bake the kohlrabies for about 30 until the stuffing is golden brown and heated through. Serve with a green salad.
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