I got home Monday night from my super awesome vacation and I was beat from all that relaxing, so I took Tuesday off and started last week’s veggie on Wednesday. I checked the list and discovered it was Swiss chard. I groaned. I already know I’m going to hate Swiss chard because it’s not cheese. I scrolled through the list to see if I could find something more interesting to look forward to. When I reached the end of the list I noticed that Swiss chard appears again in the penultimate (yeah, I said it) week of the project. Huh. This must have been what Nascar Patterson was talking about when he said one of the veggies was on the list twice; funny how I overlooked his comment at the time because I didn’t care (i.e., I couldn’t possibly have made a mistake). So, either I really had my doubts about Swiss chard when I set up the schedule and thought I needed to give myself two tries, or I made a mistake. Obviously it was because I had my doubts.
Then I remembered that I never was able to find kohlrabi during beet-and-kohlrabi week, and even though I was sort of stoked about skipping it altogether, I thought, grrr, maybe this would be a good time to try to find it again. So, Swiss Chard Week No. 1 became Kohlrabi Week Do-over.
I was still licking my wounds from the various pumpkin fiascos (…I might have left out the part about abandoning the cookies while the last batch was still in the oven…), so I sent David to the farmers’ market in search of kohlrabi. Really, folks, I know better by now.
And. He. Found. It.
I can’t tell you how excited I was, after weeks of this saga, that he fucking found it. And I’m using “found” in the strictest sense of the word—like discovered treasure—because it was neither in the area where it should have been stocked, nor was it spelled right, nor did anyone who works there know what it was (either in English or YDFM language), nor did the cashiers know what to charge him for it. David texted me with minute-by-minute updates and questions. “Are you sure it’s K-O-H-L-R-A-B-I?” I paused. Of course I’m not sure. It’s a vegetable I never knew existed before three months ago. “I’m positive.”
Now that we had kohlrabi in our possession I had to figure out what to do with it. Kohlrabi, which Google says is German for cabbage turnip, is a member of the turnip family but it is most closely related to cabbage and cauliflower. It is usually light green, but the ones I got were purple, which brought back bad beet memories. Ugh. Beets. I was relieved when I cut into them and found a white, starchy center, not unlike a potato.
I decided to roast kohlrabi the first night. I peeled them and then cut off the “woody” exterior (I basically peeled them twice). Then I sliced them into French fry-like strips, tossed them in olive oil and placed them on a cookie sheet. I roasted them for about half an hour, stirring and flipping them every few minutes in the last 10 minutes. Then I added cheese and baked them for about five more minutes. They came out looking like cheesy fries.
Here’s the thing about food that resembles other food but isn’t. It’s disappointing. Kohlrabi has a white, starchy center like a potato, but it isn’t a potato. I cut it into French fry-like strips and they came out looking like cheesy fry goodness, but they weren’t French fries. We took a bite and it tasted….not at all like the food it resembled. It tasted like kohlrabi cut into strips and roasted with cheese on it.
I mean, it wasn’t terrible. It was totally fine. I’m just not down with food that pretends to be something it’s not. Be kohlrabi, kohlrabi. I think potatoes have the market cornered on fries.