A STRANGE NAME FOR A strange vegetable, Kohlrabi belongs to the extensive cabbage family, Brassica oleracea.
Its name derives from the German for cabbage, kohl, and the Latin for turnip, rapa, another member of Brassica.
An 18th-century German botanist erroneously thought it was a cross between a cabbage and turnip and its Italian name, cavolo rapa, is a literal translation of the same misconception.
Buy kohlrabi when it is still small, about the size of an orange. Larger ones will be too tough to bother with.
Kohlrabi does not store well and should be used as soon as possible after buying or picking.
Kohlrabi can either be thinly peeled and sliced or diced before cooking, or it can simply be washed, trimmed, and cooked in the skin, which preserves the maximum flavour.
Cook Kohlrabi in boiling salted water for 30 minutes-1 hour, depending on size. Drain, and peel if cooked in the skin. Serve either seasoned with pepper, preferably freshly ground, and with melted butter, or with a cream or Hollandaise sauce.