Kohlrabi

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Kohlrabi
GreenKohlrabi.jpg
Kohlrabi stem with leaves
Details
SpeciesBrassica oleracea
Cultivar groupGongylodes Group
Cultivar group
members
many; see text
 
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Kohlrabi
GreenKohlrabi.jpg
Kohlrabi stem with leaves
Details
SpeciesBrassica oleracea
Cultivar groupGongylodes Group
Cultivar group
members
many; see text
Kohlrabi, raw
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy113 kJ (27 kcal)
Carbohydrates6.2 g
- Sugars2.6 g
- Dietary fiber3.6 g
Fat0.1 g
Protein1.7 g
Thiamine (vit. B1)0.05 mg (4%)
Riboflavin (vit. B2)0.02 mg (2%)
Niacin (vit. B3)0.4 mg (3%)
Pantothenic acid (B5)0.165 mg (3%)
Vitamin B60.15 mg (12%)
Folate (vit. B9)16 μg (4%)
Vitamin C62 mg (75%)
Vitamin E0.48 mg (3%)
Calcium24 mg (2%)
Iron0.4 mg (3%)
Magnesium19 mg (5%)
Manganese0.139 mg (7%)
Phosphorus46 mg (7%)
Potassium350 mg (7%)
Sodium20 mg (1%)
Link to USDA Database entry
Percentages are roughly approximated
using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
"Gongylodes" redirects here. For the moth genus of that name, see Erechthias.

Kohlrabi (German turnip or turnip cabbage) (Brassica oleracea Gongylodes group) (Olkopi in Assamese and Bengali) (Monji Haak in Kashmiri) is an annual vegetable, and is a low, stout cultivar of cabbage. Kohlrabi can be eaten raw as well as cooked.

Etymology[edit]

The name comes from the German Kohl ("cabbage") plus Rübe ~ Rabi (Swiss German variant) ("turnip"), because the swollen stem resembles the latter, hence its Austrian name Kohlrübe. Kohlrabi is a very commonly eaten vegetable in German speaking countries.

In India, Kohlrabi is more commonly called Knolkhol (English) or Nookal (Hindi). It is also used extensively in the southern part of India. In Kannada, Kohlrabi is called Gedde Kosu or Navilu Kosu. In Maharashtra, it is called Alkul or Navalkol. Edible preparations are made with both the stem and the leaves. In Kashmiri, the swollen stems are called Moonji (singular: Muund) and the leaves are called Haakh or munji Haakh. One commonly used variety grows without a swollen stem, having just leaves and a very thin stem, and is called Haakh.

Description[edit]

Kohlrabi has been created by artificial selection for lateral meristem growth (a swollen, nearly spherical shape); its origin in nature is the same as that of cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collard greens, and Brussels sprouts: they are all bred from, and are the same species as the wild cabbage plant (Brassica oleracea).

The taste and texture of kohlrabi are similar to those of a broccoli stem or cabbage heart, but milder and sweeter, with a higher ratio of flesh to skin. The young stem in particular can be as crisp and juicy as an apple, although much less sweet.

A basket of kohlrabi

Except for the Gigante cultivar, spring-grown kohlrabi much over 5 cm in size tend to be woody, as do full-grown kohlrabi much over perhaps 10 cm in size; the Gigante cultivar can achieve great size while remaining of good eating quality. The plant matures in 55–60 days after sowing. Approximate weight is 150 g and has good standing ability for up to 30 days after maturity.

There are several varieties commonly available, including White Vienna, Purple Vienna, Grand Duke, Gigante (also known as "Superschmelz"), Purple Danube, and White Danube. Coloration of the purple types is superficial: the edible parts are all pale yellow. The leafy greens can also be eaten.

Kohlrabi grown in a flower pot, England

Preparation and use[edit]

Kohlrabi stems are surrounded by two distinct fibrous layers that do not soften appreciably when cooked. These layers are generally peeled away prior to cooking or serving raw, with the result that the stems often provide a smaller amount of food than one might assume from their intact appearance.

The Kohlrabi root is frequently used raw in salad or slaws. It has a texture similar to that of a broccoli stem, but with a flavor that is sweeter and less vegetal.

Kohlrabi leaves are edible and can be used interchangeably with collard and kale.

Kohlrabi is an important part of the Kashmiri diet and one of the most commonly cooked foods. It is prepared with its leaves and served with a light gravy and eaten with rice.

Some varieties are grown as feed for cattle.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bailey, L. H., (1912, republished in 1975). Kohlrabi for stock-feeding. In Cyclopedia of American Agriculture: Vol. II--crops. Macmillan Publishing, New York. p. 389-390. ISBN 0-405-06762-3. Google Book Search. Retrieved on June 15, 2008.

External links[edit]