Serious Eats: Recipes

The Crisper Whisperer: Kohlrabi Remoulade

[Photographs: Carolyn Cope]

In the Crisper

Featured Veg: Kohlrabi.
Eat: Stem and leaves, raw or cooked. Leaves are typically cooked but can be sliced thin and dressed raw.
Prepare Stem: Wash well, trim ends, and peel thickly with a paring knife.
Prepare Leaves: Wash in several changes of water. Roughly chop or slice crosswise.
Substitute: For stem: turnip or rutabaga (cooked), celery root (raw). For leaves: kale, collards.

Hiya, it's Kohlrabi. From the garden, yeah. Look, I don't mean to be that guy or anything, but there's something that's been bumming me out for kind of a while, and I just feel like I need to put it out there. Holding in the bad stuff can really wilt your greens, you know? It's not lost on me that we've only known each other for--what--a couple of months now, max? But you just seem like someone I can talk to. Maybe it's the way you smile with your eyes. Probably I should see a shrink or whatever and not wear out my friendships blabbering about all this stuff, but who has that kind of money these days, right? Anyway, sometimes I think it's the whole "both my parents are Freudian psychoanalysts" thing that got me here in the first place, so. Heheh. Ahem.

Can I ask you something? We're all adults here, and it's not like anyone thinks life is a popularity contest anymore. But--I mean--I just don't get why people consistently clam up so much the minute I walk into a room. It's like no one knows quite what to make of me. So I'm a bit of an oddball! We can't all be cucumbers and tomatoes, am I right? Honestly, I can be a lot of fun--you wouldn't believe how I was dancing on the picnic table on the Fourth of July--but I feel like no one sees me that way. And after a while awkwardness becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Because how many times can a guy be made to feel like the grim reaper of good times before his foliage gets slightly bitter? Yeah, I've got a mildly assertive taste at this point. Who could blame me?

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Is it my looks, do you think? Sure, I'm a little on the portly side for a stem, and maybe I'm not the most baby-faced guy on the block. We've all read the studies, and I'd go so far as to say that in this day and age I still expect to get paid a little less than broccoli for the same work. Obviously I have to polish up my moves a little more to get the pretty girls. But I never expected things to get to the point of affecting my friendships, you know? And it's totally getting to that point right now.

Turn over a new leaf? Very funny. I wouldn't have pegged you for a punster. But then I guess this whole thing is about my not being that great at reading people, isn't it. You know what? You're right. Forget roasting. Forget braising. I'm gonna dip a stem into the water raw for Labor Day. Raw and tangy. And who knows--if it goes well, maybe I'll be back in a few weeks showing off some new moves with the leaves. Leaves for the ladiessss. Heheh. Ahem.

Kohlrabi Remoulade

About the author: Carolyn Cope writes Umami Girl and manages a CSA in Hoboken, New Jersey.

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