Friday, January 13, 2012

Kohlrabi Slaw



Slaws don't have to be made with shredded cabbage.  And in my book, they don't have to include mayonnaise.  I've expanded my definition of slaw to include a host of interesting vegetables.  If I can shred it and dress it, it's slaw.  Many vegetables can benefit from this shredding and dressing idea; fennel, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and beets.  Slaw isn't limited to summer picnics and barbecues.  I think the best slaw is made from a short list of seasonal ingredients, especially in winter.  Here I chose kohlrabi, the light green vegetable pictured below.  The name stems from the German word for cabbage, kohl.  It's delicious raw.  If you've ever had jicama, you'd be in the right ballpark as far as flavor comparisons go.  It's similar to cabbage or a broccoli stem, but sweeter; though not nearly as sweet as an apple.  The outer layer gets peeled away revealing a mild pale green, almost ivory flesh.  There's something very clean and appealing about kohlrabi.  




I let my senses guide me on a trip through the winter market as I picked up a few other additions that would play nicely off the kohlrabi.  This included my favorite carrots, an enormous orange and stumpy yellow guy, and the most lovely baby radishes.  Have you ever seen something more delicate looking?  I ran my knife over a few handfuls and created whisper thin slices to add texture, color, and crunch.  After all, we eat first with our eyes.  I tried out a few dressings before finally deciding on a Dijon vinaigrette.  Be sure to use good quality white wine vinegar.  I'm glad I was fussy about this process because the dressing worked out to be just tangy enough with a touch of lemony sweetness.  Some snipped chives add a mild onion flavor.  You can also make this slaw ahead of time.  In fact, it allows the flavors to really come together if made the day before serving.




I believe I'm onto something here and I hope you'll think so too.  It's crunchy, light, and refreshing.  I'm actually eating my third bowl as I write this post.  The first I had standing over the stove while cooking a black bean burger, and the second alongside it.  The more I eat it, the more I find myself falling for it.  I think this vibrant slaw would be a welcome addition to any winter spread.  I hope you'll seek out kohlrabi and expand your slaw definition to include this recipe.  Leave the mayo behind and let the lusting begin.



~Kohlrabi Slaw Recipe~

1/2 medium kohlrabi julienned (4 cups loosely packed)
1 cup tightly packed grated carrots
8 baby radishes, sliced paper thin
chives for garnishing


Dressing:
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp honey
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 pinches of sea salt
a grind of fresh black pepper
1 tbsp fresh snipped chives


Use a vegetable peeler or knife to remove the outer layer of the kohlrabi.  Using a mandolin or knife, carefully slice the kohlrabi into thin sheet slices.  Julienne each slice into matchsticks.  In a large bowl, add kohlrabi, grated carrots, and baby radishes and give a quick toss with your hands.  Make the dressing in a small bowl by whisking together Dijon, white wine vinegar, lemon juice, and honey.  Stream in olive oil and whisk until combined.  Season with sea salt, black pepper and fresh snipped chives.  Pour over slaw and give it a good tossing.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Serves 4-6. 

16 comments:

Anna said...

Mmmm, that looks lovely. I love kohlrabi, and that slaw would make a perfect side.

tori said...

'If you can shred it and dress it, it's slaw'. Very wise words to live by. Love it.

SkinnyMommy said...

This looks amazing--great pictures too!

Amy said...

I love when you change up what everyone sees as a classic, fixed formula of foods... letting your senses and the seasons guide you is a very smart thing indeed. I want to try out kohlrabi now!

Amy said...

Oh! And I forgot to say--I vote that you share a black bean burger next. I really want to try it out but never know a recipe to try.

Stephanie said...

Will do-still working on it. I haven't quite perfected it just yet. I go back and forth with adding a grain versus bread crumbs. I can't tell you how many batches I've made ;)

leaf (the indolent cook) said...

A very, very pretty slaw, and such refreshing flavours.

Sue/the view from great island said...

Stephanie your photography is stunning---I'm mesmerized by the pastel palette of these veggies. Your slaw is really interesting and unusual, what a great combination. I love this post!

kyleen said...

I love all your recipes; they're so creative and wholesome and healthy. This winter slaw is no exception. The color of the beet and the carrots are gorgeous.

I've nominated you for the Liebster Blog Award. Check it out here: http://www.sixteenbeans.com/2012/01/spiced-cherry-coconut-super-muffins.html

Katie said...

I have to admit that the last time I found kohlrabi in my CSA box, some of it might have ended up withering to the point of no return in my crisper drawer. I definitely made some kind of salad out of it, but I guess I didn't like it enough to use up the rest of the kohlrabi. But you make that slaw sound like just what I need. I don't have nearly enough salad during the winter. I just wish I had easy access to such beautiful produce! I'll have to see if I can find some kohlrabi at the store and give it a second chance. Do you think I could substitute jicama instead? I definitely saw some of that last week.

Zoe said...

This salad is so beautiful with lots of colours and goodness. Love the way you presented it.

Marina {Yummy Mummy) said...

This looks amazing. I just am in LOVE with the colors.

Clair said...

I totally agree about the versatility of slaws. Love what you've done with the colors in this one...

Stephanie said...

Thanks for the nice comments everyone. Kyleen, thank you for the nomination. That's very sweet of you! I'll have to check it out :) Katie, do you have a winter farmers market near you? You could certainly substitute jicama. You could also use regular old cabbage here or shredded carrots, shredded broccoli stems, anything goes really. Have fun with it!

Katie said...

Stephanie, there are a few winter farmers' markets in Chicago, but none around my neighbourhood. The next time I have to run errands elsewhere, I might try planning my trip around visiting one of them. I'll keep my eye out for kohlrabi!

Abby said...

Oh what a great slaw! I've never tried Kohlrabi before, but I adore radishes - I must try this :) (Stopping by from Lifeologia's Potluck Party!)