Ottolenghi’s Kohlrabi Salad


Tomatoes and cucumbers may be summer memories, but the craving for good salad doesn’t go away just because it’s winter. Please meet a vegetable that satisfies those salad cravings: kohlrabi.

Have you ever gazed at kohlrabi in the supermarket and wondered what on earth you could do with that strange, bumpy vegetable? 


Here’s the news: you can cook it, but even better, make salad.

Being of the cabbage family, kohlabi’s mild flavor asks for a little zing from something acid. Its crunchy texture marries well with a creamy dressing, as coleslaw does.

But don’t reach for the mayonnaise: chef Yotam Ottolenghi developed a sophisticated salad of diced kohlrabi dressed in yogurt and sour cream and brightened with winter herbs. It takes minutes to put the refreshing, tangy salad together, and it keeps in the fridge for a day if there are leftovers.

Ottolenghi’s Kohlrabi Salad (from Jerusalem, A Cookbook)

3 medium kohlrabies

1/3 cup Greek yogurt

5 tablespoons sour cream

3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese

1 small, crushed garlic clove

1-1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons finely shredded fresh mint

1 teaspoon dried mint

A handful of baby watercress (Note: I used mixed baby salad leaves)

1/4 teaspoon sumac powder

Salt and white pepper to taste

Peel the kohrabies and chop into dice about 2/3″ – 1.5 cm. big. Place the chopped kohlrabi in a bowl.

Make the dressing in a separate bowl. Combine the yogurt, sour cream, mascarpone, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste. Whisk the dressing until smooth. (Note: I made the dressing the day before and kept it, covered, in the fridge.) 

Gently stir the dressing into the chopped kohlrabi. Mix the fresh and dried mint in, plus half the watercress.  

Note: Taste the salad for seasoning and don’t be afraid to add a little more lemon, garlic, salt or pepper to taste. Just take it easy; you don’t want to overpower the dressing.

Pile the salad up on a serving dish. Sprinkle sumac over it and top it with the remaining watercress. 

Leftovers made a fine lunch next day, with a couple of hamine eggs (recipe included in our Ultimate Ful and Hummus post) and pita.

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