Before you get all "kohl-WHAT?!" on me, I will preface by saying "I know." I know I sometimes use things you don't know about. I know I sometimes use obscure vegetables. I'll work on it. But I won't stop. I want to work with new things and I want you to do the same. I want people to stop being afraid of food, of change, of something unfamiliar.
I think it's totally awesome to make fries not out of potatoes, but out of this awesome new-to-me brassica, kohlrabi. It's a vegetable that is part of the cabbage family and has a scent similar to that of broccoli. It can be eaten raw, but when cooked for a long period of time, it's sweetness becomes more pronounced and it takes on the creamy texture of a french fry. And I think that's awesome.
I also think it's awesome that I could get 3 kohlrabi roots for $1.69 at the market. Yes, they came from Texas and I live in Wisconsin, but this is a vegetable that can handle the traveling. And for that price, I could make a whole tray of kohlrabi fries that could feed 6 people.
What is also awesome is that all the members of the brassica family, including the kohlrabi, are absolutely filled with essential vitamins and phytochemicals (cancer fighters!), so we are not only eating something delicious and inexpensive, but we're packing in the micronutrients. Again, awesome.
So without further ado, kohlrabi fries. One spiced. One not. For the record, my 2-year-old preferred the spiced, which are not to be confused with spicy. I did too. Also, I made ketchup, but the recipe I called for used more pepper than my instincts said were right. I did it anyway, so my batch was pretty peppery. I would recommend seasoning with salt and pepper at the end instead of at the beginning when you can't take it back. Here is the ketchup recipe I used. I would say it's good except the amount of pepper. Also, I didn't strain mine and I still think the texture was great.
Baked Kohlrabi Fries, 2 ways
serves 2-4, depending on what else you are eating
adapted from Five & Spice
2 kohlrabi roots with stems removed (if they come with them)
2 Tbsp. melted coconut oil (I think 1 would be plenty. Also, you could use olive oil)
sea salt or kosher salt
chili powder & ground cumin
1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
2. To prepare kohlrabi, wash and then peel. It is a hard and large root, so be careful. I would recommend holding your root against your cutting board and peeling straight onto that instead of into the sink. Then cut the kohlrabi into "fry-sized" sticks. First, cut the root in half and then with each half, cut the sticks.
3. Toss kohlrabi with a generous pinch of salt and the coconut oil on a baking sheet (I also think they might get more crispy if you put the coconut oil on the baking sheet, then placed the kohlrabi on top instead of tossing it together).
4. Optional (but delicious): Sprinkle with lots of chili powder (basically until they look pretty well covered) and a smaller amount of ground cumin (these aren't "spicy" spices, so you don't have to worry too much about the heat).
5. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping or shaking around once in the middle. Eat with ketchup or other dip of choice.