Kooky Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi in the Spiderweb Garden

I have to say, kohlrabi is one of my new favourite vegetables.  A) It is incredibly odd-looking.  B) It’s tasty.  C) My Garden Club kids who tried it were also impressed.  I decided to plant some this year in the Withrow Spiderweb garden mostly because of it’s amusing appearance, but I was also pretty sure the kids would like the mild, slightly sweet, cabbage taste.  I’m glad I was right.  I asked a couple of kids to pick one of the kohlrabi (what’s the plural of kohlrabi?), and we left the rest to grow for another couple of weeks.  They’re still pretty small, but at least we all got a taste… and a bunch of the kids asked for seconds!

Kohlrabi excitement in Garden Club

My introduction to kohlrabi was when I was doing an internship at Wooler Dale Farm in the summer of 2009.  I’d seen it in the fields, and was amused by it’s ridiculous shape.  But the first time I tasted it was in the car on the way back to the farm from Thanksgiving Saturday market.  We were hungry, but had forgotten to buy anything to eat on the way back.  And then there was traffic.  The only things we could reach from where we were in the car were a couple of left-over kohlrabi and a knife.  Well, kohlrabi snack it was.  And I was hooked!

I’m glad I’ve gotten a few kids at least interested (if not yet hooked on) kohlrabi too.  At Garden Club the week after we’d tasted it, one of the boys said something about the kohlrabi when he first came into the garden – I was excited that he’d remembered the odd name of this funny veggie a week later (without any prompting from me).

And a few kohlrabi facts: It’s a plant in the cabbage family (“kohl” means cabbage).  You eat the bulb part that grows above ground (though the leaves are also edible – you can steam or sautee them like kale).  The Estonian word for kohlrabi is nuikapsas, meaning “club cabbage”.

Happy growing!


2 responses to this post.

  1. Krazy! I will definitely try it next year!


  2. The kids are now officially hooked on kohlrabi. They all come into garden club asking if we’ll pick more today – and asking for kohlrabi by name! And then when we finally eat some at the end, they all ask if they can take a whole handful of pieces. It’s amazing! I definitely recommend giving in a go in school gardens!


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