Friday, July 9, 2010

Kohlrabi Hash

I woke up this morning wondering what I should make for dinner tonight. In my half-asleep state, I was trying to figure out what we had left in the fridge from the farm share. I could think of greens, radishes, turnips... aha, we have kohlrabi. I was excited to remember the kohlrabi because that guaranteed something new and different to prepare, eat and write about. I decided right then that I wanted to have kohlrabi hash with steak and salad.

I had seen kohlrabi in the stores, but I had never purchased it, prepared it, or eaten it. I got some tips from our CSA coordinator last weekend, and I double checked on the internet to make sure I wasn't missing out on any other stellar ideas. Everyone seemed to agree that kohlrabi hash was a great way to go. When our CSA coordinator mentioned kohlrabi hash, I envisioned grated kohlrabi in a cast iron pan cooking away in some olive oil, but when I looked up kohlrabi hash on-line all the recipes were inspired by potato pancakes. They included eggs, breadcrumbs, onion and seasonings. Of course all 5 or 6 of the recipes ended up referring back to one source – funny how that happens. We decided to go with the original idea - simple kohlrabi hash browns.

We made a salad with salad mix, radishes, carrots and salad turnips from our CSA share. Salad turnips are interesting because from the outside they look like regular turnips with a white waxy skin, but once the skin is peeled off, the texture is much closer to jicama. It has a slightly sweet flavor and is great raw. Salad turnips and kohlrabi are the two new things I have tried so far through our farm share. We topped the salad off with our house vinaigrette. My husband's salad dressing came through yet again - it was delicious!

We cooked the steak in a cast iron pan on the stove top. Before living in an apartment, the idea of frying a good thick steak would have appalled me. I thought the only way to cook them was on a grill, but they turn out great this way. We generously salted and peppered each side and placed it in a hot pan over medium high heat with a bit of olive oil. The trick is to leave it alone for as long as it needs to cook on that side, ours was over an inch thick so we did 6-7 minutes per side. This part is hard for me because I'm a cook that likes to fiddle (stir the pot, push thing around while they are sauteing, etc.). But in this case, it's best to set the timer and leave it alone until it is time to flip it because it will create a wonderful crust on the steak. Here is a photo of the finished meal:

Kohlrabi Hash Browns
2 heads of kohlrabi, peeled
olive oil
salt and pepper

Grate the kohlrabi with a box grater or food processor. Place the grated kohlrabi in a piece of cheese cloth or paper towel, and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Heat up a skillet and generously coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil. Dump in the kohlrabi and spread out into an even layer. Cook for a couple of minutes over medium heat and then flip. Cook until the kohlrabi is browned on both sides. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

The kohlrabi hash browns were great! We both wished there were more so we could go back for seconds. They are very similar to potato hash browns, but slightly sweeter and a slightly firmer texture.

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