Kohlrabi: the almost space food

I’ll admit the title is a bit of a stretch, but in fairness if you Google kohlrabi, some of the top results do seem to focus on the fact this veg looks a bit like “Sputnik”. Ju passes a farm shop on her way home and this root veg is one of the more random choices that has made it back to our kitchen. Wikipedia reliable informs me Kohlrabi, literally means “cabbage turnip” in Swiss German which hardly gives it a high end allure! However, having now tried it I can report it’s fresh, crisp and slightly peppery and good – kinda similar to radish. 

 

hmm not sure I see it!

 
This was a quick, after work dish which all went in the oven, allowing freedom to change and grab a beer.

Kohlrabi gratin, roasted asparagus with barley and bulgar wheat

  • One kohlrabi
  • One small onion
  • Small pot of single cream
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Bunch of asparagus
  • Cherry toms
  • Barley and bulgar wheat – I cheated with this

Several of the kohlrabi receipes online suggest serving raw or blanched as part of a salad, often matched with apple, but I came across a suggestion for gratin and as I love potatoes dauphinois, which is similar, this is what I went for. Firstly whack the oven on, then trim the roots from the kohlrabi and peel the outer skin plus the tough green layer underneath, then slice super finely. Ideally use a mandolin, I used the widest blade on cheese grater which also did the trick. Add the kohlrabi slices to a dish and cover with the cream. Finely chop the onion and fry in a little oil until soft, adding to the dish. Peel and finely chop the garlic, add to the dish with a good crunch of salt and pepper and mix everything together. Put it in the oven at let’s say 200 degrees and leave there. The recipe I found also included a topping of breadcrumbs, which I would have done, had I remembered! Other recipes also suggested ham or spinach, which both sound good but I was short on time and ingredients. Others also added potatoes, which would make it more substantial but personally I like it without.

As I was short on time I completely cheated with the bulgar wheat and used a pre-made pack. In my defence it was on offer so thought I’d give it a try and wasn’t half bad, only taking two mins in the microwave at the very end. Made from scratch next time I promise. Anyway, take a handful of cherry toms, drizzle with oil and put in a dish alongside the gratin in the oven. Trim the tough ends of the asparagus, drizzle with oil and S&P then put under the grill.  These take less time then the oven bits and want turning once as they start to soften and are looking a brighter, lush green.

Once everything is looking good – the gratin should be bubbling and crisping (I could have left mine longer), then serve and enjoy! We both went back for seconds of the Sputnik gratin.

  

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