KOHLRABI FRITTERS

Winter is probably the one season that people do not consider to have a bountiful harvest of seasonal produce, but we have experienced quite the opposite. Our farmer’s market has a plethora of different vegetables available year-round, but most of the available vegetables in the winter are not commonly eaten in our modern food system. Vegetables of all sorts line the market tables every winter: turnips, rutabaga, daikon, kohlrabi – these winter crops are foreign to most of us. But sticking to seasonal eating means you have to be willing to try something new and by doing that you just may discover a hidden gem in those uncommon veggies. That is precisely what happened to us when we picked up some kohlrabi from the farmer’s market. They entered our kitchen as raw kohlrabi stems with their leaves still attached and entered our bellies as the most amazing kohlrabi fritters.

KOHLRABI FRITTERS
KOHLRABI FRITTERS

what is kohlrabi anyway?

The name Kohlrabi comes from the German: kohl (“cabbage”) rabi (“turnip”) with its origin stemming from the wild cabbage plant just like its relatives cabbage, broccoli, kale, collard greens and brussels sprouts. The taste and texture of kohlrabi is very similar to the stem of broccoli or the heart of cabbage, but its flavor is mild and sweet in comparison. Kohlrabi flesh is crisp and juicy like an apple and its leaves are similar to kale, so it is the perfect candidate to be eaten raw as a salad or cooked into fritters – we went for fritters ;)

Kohlrabi is an ideal vegetable for fritters. Their flesh is a perfect consistency and the leaves incorporate so well, almost turning into a kale chip-like texture once the fritters get fried nice and crisp. We keep the add-ins pretty simple with these fritters because we really want the flavor of the kohlrabi to shine. Chickpea flour is our flour of choice for these fritters- its sweet rich flavor complements the kohlrabi nicely, plus it is rich in protein and naturally gluten-free. (* if you can’t get chickpea flour, you can substitute with any type of flour really!)

We used buttermilk for moisture and an egg for binding, but the recipe can easily be made dairy-free and egg-free by substituting dairy-free buttermilk and ground flax + water, also known as a flax egg – the details are in the recipe down below.

KOHLRABI FRITTERS
KOHLRABI FRITTERS

a case for seasonal eating:

The kohlrabi fritters turn a beautiful golden hue once cooked and their crispy edges are perfectly contrasted with a dollop of cool cilantro, mint & lime yogurt. Cilantro, mint & lime are all in season along with kohlrabi so pairing them together is naturally meant to be. We used Greek yogurt in our recipe, but coconut milk yogurt would be a wellsuited substitute for a dairy-free option.

Out of all of the fritters that we have eaten in our home, these kohlrabi fritters have become our absolute favorite. The addition of the leaves not only makes this a no-waste vegetable recipe, but the flavor and texture they add to the fritters is just amazing. This recipe proves that sticking to seasonal eating, even when the options are unfamiliar, is totally worth it.

When seasonal eating became an integral part of our real food journey, not only were we granted the opportunity to try new things, like kohlrabi, but we realized the positive impact seasonal eating would have on our local community. By buying direct from growers at our local farmer’s market, we support people who are dedicated to growing food with integrity. And an added benefit is that the products we buy was harvested the day before we buy it, making it as fresh & nutritious as can be!

KOHLRABI FRITTERS

Hopefully, by now, you have been convinced that seasonal eating has some amazing rewards; for your community, for your life, and for your tastebuds! And if you have been on the fence about trying a vegetable that you have no experience with, start with kohlrabi and make these fritters – you’ll never look at an unfamiliar vegetable the same again.

KOHLRABI FRITTERS

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KOHLRABI FRITTERS



  • Yield:
    10 fritters 1x

Ingredients


Units


Scale

FOR THE FRITTERS:

  • 2 lbs of kohlrabi with leaves attached
  • 23 green onions
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced (we use a microplane zester for this)
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine grain salt
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk (see note below for dairy free substitute)
  • 1 egg (see note below for egg free substitute)
  • Palm shortening or avocado oil for frying

FOR THE YOGURT:

  • 1 cup Greek yogurt (or substitute coconut milk yogurt)
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh mint
  • pinch of fine grain salt
  • cilantro leaves for garnish


Instructions

  1. Start by removing the leaves from the kohlrabi
  2. De-stem the leaves & rinse the kohlrabi leaves in cool water, shake dry or spin in a salad spinner to dry
  3. Chop the kohlrabi leaves into approximately 1/2″x1/2″ pieces & reserve
  4. Peel the outer skin off of the kohlrabi, grate the kohlrabi & reserve
  5. Dice green onion & mince 1 large clove of garlic & reserve
  6. In a bowl, combine chickpea flour, spices, salt & baking soda – whisk to combine
  7. In a separate bowl, whisk buttermilk, egg & reserved garlic together until well incorporated
  8. Add flour mixture to wet ingredients & whisk until batter is smooth
  9. Add grated kohlrabi, chopped leaves & diced green onion to the batter, using a spatula to fold the vegetables into the batter until well incorporated
  10. Pre-heat oven to 170f degrees & prepare a baking sheet with paper towels
  11. Heat a 12″ cast iron skillet over medium heat with enough oil to fill the pan 1/4″ high
  12. Once oil is heated, use 1/3 cup to portion each fritter into the pan – (we use these molds to keep their shape uniform) smooth each fritter until it is even in thickness
  13. Fry over medium heat for about 3-4 minutes on each side
  14. While the fritters fry, you can make the yogurt sauce: blend yogurt, herbs, lime juice & salt in a small bowl until well combined, reserve
  15. When the fritters are done frying, remove them from the pan & place them on the paper towel lined baking sheet & place the baking sheet in the oven to keep the fritters warm while you fry the next batch, adding oil to the pan as needed
  16. Once all of the fritters are done, top them off with yogurt sauce, garnish with cilantro leaves & serve

Notes

DAIRY FREE BUTTERMILK: combine 3/4 cup dairy free milk of choice & add 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar – let stand 5-10 minutes

FLAX EGG: combine 1 tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 tbsp of water –
stir well & let set for 15 minutes





{ 12 comments… add one }
  • Deb|EastofEdenCooking April 11, 2016, 8:09 am

    Gorgeous photos! And a wonderful recipe for kohlrabi! Your post shines gorgeous light on this underused vegetable.

    • bella April 11, 2016, 11:36 am

      Thank you so much Deb! I really appreciate your king words! And I am so excited for people to try kohlrabi, it is just delicious!

  • thefolia January 28, 2020, 12:41 pm

    I love these patties, I usually make them with zucchini, but can’t wait to try them with kohlrabi…happy feasting.

    • bella | ful-filled January 30, 2020, 6:29 pm

      Oh yay! Aren’t fritters the best!?! I can’t wait for you to try it with kohlrabi!

  • Marian Stobbe-Strijker February 1, 2020, 1:34 pm

    I did not know a lot of recipes for kohlrabi other than raw and with a cream sauce. When I saw the beautiful picture of the fritters, I went to buy kohlrabi to make them. They were so good that I have made them several times since then! I love the spices and herbs and you can make them ahead. Thank you Bella for this wonderful recipe!

    • bella | ful-filled February 3, 2020, 10:07 am

      Thank you so much for sharing that with me! It truly makes me so happy to know that my recipe is loved by you!

  • Jen pattap February 1, 2020, 5:49 pm

    These are amazing. We try and buy our food from our local farmer’s market and keep things as local as possible. As vegetarians, the winter can get rough and fairly boring with a lot of roots and two young almost-always-adventurous-but -still-preferring-pizza kids. I had a bunch of kohlrabi in my fridge and saw this post and literally made it that night. I’m terrible at sticking to recipes and didn’t have enough kohlrabi so I grated some rutabaga in too, didn’t have green onions so skipped them, and baked them instead of cooked them in a skillet. They were AMAZING! I made a different yogurt sauce for dipping and still it was all fantastic! My 4yo & 2yo loved them, and so did my hubby and I. Bella, these are so fabulous and made a divine and super fun winter dinner on a cold, cloudy night. Will absolutely be making them again!

    • bella | ful-filled February 3, 2020, 10:24 am

      Reading your comment literally made my day! I am so honored to inspire your winter seasonal eating! And I love that you made adaptations based on what you had on hand and your family’s preferences! So so grateful you made my recipe! Thank you for taking the time to share your experience!

  • Nancy July 22, 2020, 9:10 am

    It would be helpful to know how many cups of shredded kohlarbi and chopped kohlrabi leaves comes from 2 lbs of kohlrabi. I harvested bulbs of several sizes from my garden and tossed the leaves prior to finding this recipe. I will sub chopped kale for the leaves. Thanks!

    • bella | ful-filled July 24, 2020, 4:56 pm

      Do you have a kitchen scale? Because kohlrabi comes in all shapes and sizes, I figured sharing a weight was the most accurate way to help people know how much kohlrabi they need for the recipe. When kohlrabi comes back into season here, I will measure out what two pounds of shredded kohlrabi bulb and leaves yields into cups ;)

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