Growing up my dad always grew kohlrabi in his garden and it was a regular on the dinner table – peeled and sliced into wedges served icy cold. It’s the only way I’d ever really considered eating this vegetable, a relative of cabbage, until I saw this recipe pop up in my newsfeed on Facebook from Food & Wine one day. I was intrigued in this new use for this childhood memory and when I saw that it was a recipe from Stephanie Izard of Girl & the Goat there was no doubt that I was going to make it. I needed a dish to take to a baby shower and figured this was the perfect choice for a bunch of ladies on a hot July day.
In case you’re new to my blog, I am a total Top Chef addict. We plan not only where we are going to eat on vacations, but practically whole vacations around eating at Top Chef contestant and judges’ restaurants. Stephanie won Season 4 of the cooking reality show and that we were lucky enough to score ourselves a table at Girl & the Goat when we were in Chicago in February was most likely the highlight of the trip. Our experience there – both the food and the service – lived up to, if not exceeded, all the hype.
I only made slight modifications to the recipe below (I mean really, who am I to mess with Stephanie’s creation?). I pan toasted the almonds (seems more energy efficient than heating up the oven for just 1/2 cup of almonds). Also, I thought originally maybe she was using the white balsamic to keep the dressing color light but a couple ingredients later there’s soy sauce – so much for that theory. I think if you don’t have white, regular would be just fine. I also used olive oil for the grapeseed – again a matter of using what I had on hand. Finally, I garnished with a few fennel fronds which echoed the lightness of the salad.
Kohlrabi, Fennel and Blueberry Salad
Makes 6 servings
1/2 cup sliced almonds
2 Tbsp minced peeled fresh ginger
2 Tbsp minced shallot
1 Tbsp white balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp mayonnaise
1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp pure maple syrup
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/4 lbs kohlrabi, peeled and very thinly sliced on a mandoline
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced on a mandoline
2 oz semifirm goat cheese, such as Evalon, Garrotxa or Manchester, shaved (1/2 cup)
1 cup blueberries or pitted, halved sweet cherries
2 Tbsp torn mint leaves
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the almonds on a pie plate and toast for about 7 minutes, until golden. Let cool.
In a mini food processor or blender, combine the ginger, shallot, vinegar, mayonnaise, mustard, soy sauce and maple syrup and puree. With the blender on, add the grapeseed oil in a thin stream and blend until creamy. Season the dressing with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl, toss the kohlrabi with the fennel, cheese, toasted almonds and dressing. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Add the blueberries and mint and toss gently. Serve right away.
I pulled the following nutritionals for this salad from Calorie Count :
It was everything I wanted it to be – delicious, unique and beautiful – all while keeping the calories in check. That makes it a winner in my book.