How It All Started

Bob Phillips

The title of this blog was inspired by one of my Spanish professor's at Miami University of Ohio, Dr. Robert Phillips, who died in the e...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


Image: Vegetarians
 in Paradise
Kohlrabi, that's what! Behold, the kohlrabi, a stout member of the cabbage family, also known as a German turnip. Varying from golf ball to nearly softball in size, it looks like a cross between a Brussels sprout and Sputnik.

One of the great things about having a share in community-supported agriculture (CSA) is the introduction to all sorts of foods -- mainly produce -- that may have been unknown. That was certainly the case for kohlrabi in our family. I remember being introduced to it last year by our friends at Colchester Neighborhood Farm, and cooking up a small bit of it with herbs.

One of the challenges of a CSA is learning -- or relearning -- to live with food seasons. It is always harvest season in a supermarket, but that harvest may be thousands of miles away! So a good CSA community provides not only varied foods but also help with figuring out what to do with them. Enter this evening's dinner: kohlrabi and turnip soup, courtesty of a fellow farm-boxer through the Colchester listserv.

The recipe came as a JPG this time, so I've attached it in that form (click to enlarge). By the way, food photography is a rare specialty, so please don't judge this soup by the photo! The accompanying note suggested that this would be popular with fans of potato soup (which we are), and since we had only one kohlrabi (is that a kohlrabo?) and two small turnips, I added a couple of potatoes. I'm glad I did, as the bitter flavors of the other roots were moderated by the potatoes. I also substituted canned vegetable broth for the chicken stock. I did manage to use all the other ingredients as called for, though I did not manage to remove the garlic before hitting puree.

The results? I loved it, which actually surprised me. Pam found it tolerable but bitter. With Paloma, we reverted to bite-counting games more suited to a younger child. Good thing I also made some biscuits!

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