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What exactly is kohlrabi and how can it best be used?

Kohlrabi is a round, purple or green stem that looks like a turnip. The leaves, which can be cooked as for spinach, are often trimmed off before the vegetable is sold.

Look for small kohlrabi that are not much bigger than a tennis ball and stuff them, or steam to serve as a hot vegetable accompaniment. If you find leaves attached, trim and shred them, then steam briefly to serve over the halved or quartered globes of the cooked stem.

As it is a member of the cabbage family, the spicy warmth of kohlrabi is best brought out by blanching.

Kohlrabi and Cress Salad Recipe
Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 minute

500 g kohlrabi
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 red-skinned apple
4 slim spring onions
Black pepper
1 carton mustard and cress

For the dressing:
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons natural yoghurt

Peel the kohlrabi, then grate it coarsely into a saucepan. Pour on boiling water and cook it just until it returns to the boil. Drain and refresh immediately under a cold tap. Squeeze the lemon juice into a small bowl and half fill it with cold water. Quarter and core the apple then coarsely grate it into the bowl. Drain the apple, mix it with the kohlrabi and dry thoroughly, either in a salad spinner or with a tea towel before transferring it to a salad bowl. Finely slice the spring onions and add to the bowl with some coarsely ground black pepper. Mix the mustard, vinegar and salt in a small screw-top jar and shake until combined. Add the olive oil and yoghurt, shake vigorously again and toss into the salad with another good grinding of black pepper. Cut the mustard and cress and spread over the salad, tossing again immediately before serving.

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