A wonderful tongue-rolling name for the cultivar group of kohlrabi, the German turnip (Brassica oleracea Gongylodes group).

Half a kohlrabi stem; grated and lightly dressed in mustard mayonnaise

At our local farmer’s market at the weekend, I recognised a pile of these vegetables that I had seen in pictures but never tried, and couldn’t resist bringing one home to rectify that. When looking through the seed magazines last year and deciding what to grow, kohlrabi had crossed my mind as something new to try, though never quite made it onto the order form.

The stall holder suggested serving it raw, sliced thinly and dressed in mayonnaise with a hint of horseradish. Back at home, our cupboards showed a distinct lack of horseradish, so I improvised by mixing a little Dijon mustard into mayonnaise, and used this to lightly dress a heap of grated kohlrabi. The texture of the vegetable was fascinating, it was as crisp and juicy as the best apple. Its flavour was reminiscent of the gentlest radish, and it worked beautifully in the mustard mayonnaise, to make a light juicy side dish.

I’m impressed. This is definitely something that we’ll add to the kitchen garden next year.


6 thoughts on “Gongylodes

  1. I’ve never tried it either. Mainly because I didn’t know what to do with it. I spotted some at my farmers market too on Saturday but didn’t get any. Might pick some up at the next one and looks like another to add to the list for next year;)

    • I don’t think I’d seen it for sale before Saturday, but I’m pleased I decided to ask the lady who sells them how she would prepare it (I’m not convinced she’d actually tried it herself, the dressing was a suggestion a customer had given her!) The crisp juiciness is quite beguiling. I think you can cook them like turnip or swede too, but I’m not sure I would bother when the raw julienne is so appealing.

    • Apparently you can also stuff them, roast them, bake them, braise them etc. There seem to be a lot of recipes out there, raw salad is just the start, but a fine one in my opinion…

  2. Hmm, you almost convince me to have another go – at eating it, that is, not growing it, not until I know I like it… I tried it years ago when some came in my veg box, I roasted it, but hated it…

  3. I tried them too for the first time this year-had a free packet of seeds from somewhere. I grew them on in large pots and they have stormed away and will be ready to pick probably next weekend. But I had no idea what to do with them so this post is very timely-thank you!!

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