Cooking with New Vegetables – Rutabaga and Kolhrabi!

This past Sunday was primarily a day of cooking for me and my family. Wanting to prepare healthy dishes for the week, we headed to the store and came across a number of interesting looking and unfamiliar foods! Feeling adventurous, we bought some of them, took them home, and found recipes for them.

Bok Choi

Bok Choi

Kolhrabi at its finest

Kolhrabi at its finest

What was so fun about this, was how odd and unique the plants looked! In fact, I recall thinking: Please, let these not be poisonous! But actually, they all tasted pretty normal –not to mention, some of them had great flavor.

One such vegetable was Rutabaga, a cross between a turnip and a cabbage that originated in Sweden. While the rutabaga may taste inedibly bitter to some, I thought it tasted rather plain, although it had a delicious crunch. The rutabaga is known for its high levels of Vitamin C, containing 25 mg for every 100 g (42% of daily recommended dose). We added this crazy vegetable to the recipe “fall slaw,” a great recipe. The recipe calls for a unique vegetable combination –intermixing carrots, rutabaga, kohlrabi, and celery- along with some apple, lemon, and pumpkin seeds. The dressing was a tahini past with maple syrup, lemon, a pinch of salt, and water. To my delight, the spiralizer came in handy for the carrots, apples, and rutabaga! The whole slaw just looked amazing and tasted great. Plus, good protein sources came from the tahini (sesame seeds we ground up), pumpkin seeds, and a bit from the veggies.

Great Fall Slaw from

We also got Kolhrabi, which went straight into the Fall Slaw. The word that came to mind when I saw this little green vegetable with long, lush, green stems was “adorable.” For some reason, it just looked so cute. Looking online, we discovered that you can eat the long leaves like you do kale and chard, so we saved those for our morning smoothies. Kolhrabi comes from the same family as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and collard greens –with a texture similar to a broccoli stem but a bit milder. Kolhrabi has many noted health benefits. It is rich in vitamins and dietary fiber, yet low in calories, fat, and has zero cholesterol. Like rutabaga, it is an excellent source of vitamin C, providing 62 mg per 100 g. It also contains a myriad of phytochemicals like isothiocyanates, sulforphane, and indole-3-carbinol. What’s more, it contains notable amounts of B vitamins and minerals.

On top of that, my mom and I tried out another new recipe: Shepherds Pie from one of Kimberly Snyder’s recipe books The Detox Diet. While Shepherd’s pie is traditionally heavy with meat, cheese, and a bread crust, this one used a hearty mix of corn, peas, celery, and seasoning for the insides, and a delicious, savory yam topping for the “crust!” It was warm, filling, and deliciously gooey! Plus, it was all vegetables so no worries about loading up on fats.

Cooking up the "pie stuffing"

Cooking up the “pie stuffing”

Blending the yam "crust"

Blending the yam “crust”

Corn, carrots, peas, and celery laid out!

Corn, carrots, peas, and celery laid out!

Adding the "yam crust"

Adding the “yam crust”

Piping hot out of the oven!

Piping hot out of the oven!

Shop time: 1 hour, Cook Time: 2 hours, Write-Up time: .5 hour, Research: .5 hour

Cost: fresh vegetables ($25), Materials: Fresh vegetables and produce

Total time: 45 hours


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