Kohlrabi, carrot and cumin salad

kohlrabi, carrot and cumin salad

What on earth is kohlrabi? I hear you ask….Well, I confess I didn’t know myself until I got one in my veggie box (if you don’t know what it looks like scroll down. I took a lovely pic of it to show you). The thing is I can’t choose the vegetables I get delivered in my season box. This has its downsides, the main one being that when it’s cabbage season you get it EVERY week (different ones, I grant you)…and let’s face it, there is a limit to HOW MUCH cabbage a human being can cope with (or his/her intestines to be more precise. Sorry for being blunt). The upside of not being able to choose, however, is that on occasion you get some vegetables you just would not buy but which turn out to be not too bad after all (see my comment on beetroot). And other times, like in the case of the Jerusalem artichoke or indeed the kohlrabi, you get something which you just haven’t got a clue in hell as to A) WHAT it is and B) HOW to cook it. In the case of the mysterious kohlrabi I discovered a few interesting facts. The first one being that although it is pretty unknown here in England, and I gather in Italy too (Candi, please confirm or deny the allegation) in Germany and Eastern Europe it is very common. How to describe its taste? Well…..I’d say it’s a cross between a turnip and a radish, although I do believe in Germany it is classified as a cabbage (Beate, is this correct?). I understand it is very good in salads and a lovely addition to coleslaw. I can well believe it as it’s certainly nice and crunchy. The recipe I plumped for was the one suggested in the Riverford leaflet. I have got to say I was rather pleased with it. I am always on the lookout for easy to assemble, unusual salads and I think this particular one ticked the box. PLUS it’s exorcising all those indulgent and naughty cakes we are so fond of blogging. Before I tell you how to go about it I must ask a German person (or anyone with expert knowledge of the kohlrabi): do you have to peel it or not? I didn’t but I wasn’t sure whther I committed a crime or not. :-)


1 kohlrabi

2 carrots

sunflower oil (but presumably olive oil would be fine too!)


2 teaspoons cumin seeds

1 tablespoon lemon juice


a kohlrabi

In a food processor thinly slice the kohlrabi and the carrots (or use a mandolin if you haven’t got a food processor). Then put the sliced vegetables in a bowl and season with salt. In the meantime heat the oil in a frying pan on a medium heat, toss the cumin seeds in it and wait until they start to sizzle. Remove and dress the salad with it. Add lemon juice. Voilà! I had it with my grilled beef burgers and nice it was too.

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5 Responses to “Kohlrabi, carrot and cumin salad”

  • Allora, facciamo un po’ di ordine. Mi hai messo in crisi con i tuoi cavoli. Perché adesso scopro dopo anni che non ho mai distino tra SEDANO RAPA (Apium graveolens, UN TIPO DI CELERY) e CAVOLO RAPA (Brassica oleracea gongylodes, KOHLARABI, appunto). Oh che visione del mondo miope e approssimativa!!!

  • Eh no carissima! Dobbiamo conoscerli i nostri cavoli. E che cavolo??? Ha ha. Beh, io li sto imparando tutti. Ce n’è una marea! Il sedano rapa qui si chiama celeriac. Ha un aspetto completamente diverso dal kohlrabi, anche se si può usare nella stessa maniera. Nelle insalate, ad esempio. A me piace molto. Infatti mi sembra di avere già bloggato una ricetta. Sa proprio di sedano (celery, in inglese. Da qui il nome, immagino). Comunque vedi tutte le cose che stiamo imparando con questo blog? Ci stiamo veramente allargando gli orizzonti….:-)

  • try roasting it in small pieces …delicious

  • Hi Lucina, the kohlrabi is indeed well-known here in Germany, my mum always makes a vegetable side dish with it and yes, we’ve always peeled it although I believe you can eat the skin and also the small leaves. I must admit I never used it myself (just like the beetroot which I only discovered last winter, you might remember talking about risotto). But I might be tempted to use it now and try the recipe you mention on the blog. I just did some research on the kohlrabi, and apparently the word derives from the Latin rapa, rupum = turnip and caulis = cabbage, so it means cabbage turnip. Kohl in German is cabbage.
    Have fun with it and keep cooking!

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