450: Kohlrabi

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:04

I'm Molly and I'm Matthew.

Molly 0:05

And this is spilled milk the show that Oh, okay, wait, hold on. Okay. There's your we cook something delicious. Eat it all

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:18

in. You can't have any Yay.

Molly 0:21

never happened before.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:23

That's okay. Like the rest of the show is gonna be real awkward and uncomfortable for me because today we're talking about coal Robbie, I think I think I've eaten twice. And I have never bought

Molly 0:32

Great, so I couldn't remember our opening tagline and you don't know anything about the topic.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:38

I do have a little Memory Lane, though.

Molly 0:40

Oh, good. Take it away.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:41

I don't. Okay, something in the 80s that I was watching. There was Oh, wait, I remember what it was. This is all coming back to me. It was a commercial for bartles and jaymes wine coolers. And I think the joke was like that. When you're drinking wine. People are always talking like snooty wine. People are always talking about wine pairings. And everything goes well with bartles and jaymes wine coolers, so you don't have to worry about this. They end they tasted a bunch of things and found that the only things that don't pair well with a bartles and jaymes wine cooler are kohlrabi and candy corn. And that was the first time I heard the word kohlrabi, but I don't think I knew what it was until years later.

Molly 1:23

Oh my god. I love that. You remember that? I

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:26

wonder if we could find this commercial on YouTube. I bet we could.

Molly 1:29

Do you want to take a second and look for it? No,

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:32

we have a producer for that.

Molly 1:34

Great. Okay. Well, hey, I remember that all those commercials wasn't what isn't it? Like a couple of older older white guys? Yep. Like, what type of hat is that? Like a little? Like, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:46

don't know pork pie hat maybe? Yeah, like they were like, you know, we were always wearing like khaki pants. They were folksy homespun guys, and it was like totally made up because it was like some you know, corporate brand name. Have you

Molly 2:00

ever had a wine cooler? Yes,

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:03


Molly 2:04

I mean, like a wine cooler ad out of like a prepared wine cooler and not just like wine that you Oh, it's a wine cooler.

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:11

wine cooler is it's it's a it's a soda, that sort of wine flavor.

Molly 2:15

Okay, can I do the same thing by taking wine? And like pouring some like unflavored fizzy water in it. Does that make a wine cooler? You

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:23

would need to add sugar. Oh, very sweet. Okay, well, I think we talked about this on the hard seltzer episode that that hard seltzer has kind of taken over like hard seltzer and like, you know what? Mike's hard lemonade is kind of like a wine cooler. Okay, it's like a bee flavored like you get like the raspberry bartles and jaymes wine cooler. And so it was really just like, if you don't like wine, but you want to get drunk.

Molly 2:49

You know, we are about to be sued by Mike's hard lemonade. For like defamation.

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:54

Yes, I'm sure that's what's gonna happen. Yeah,

Molly 2:56

we're we're such a big and powerful

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:58

I vasca I think they're too too busy counting their money.

Molly 3:02

Yeah. Wait a minute, Matthew. Hey, this episode is airing on August 13. Have you had any? Any hard seltzer? This this season? No,

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:10

I have not. I've been I've been drinking hard cider. Oh, okay. So Laurie brought home a four pack of Seattle cider, dry hard cider, which I think is the best commercial and it can hard cider that you can get locally. And we've been sharing cans and we're three cans in because that's how we roll.

Molly 3:28

Oh, you guys are the best. Okay, well, my memory lane of Cole Robbie. I think it really only dates back to kind of the my early experiences going to farmers markets here in Seattle. So when I first moved here, it was to go to grad school. And I had got a part time job working at the front desk of a Pilates studio that was then in the basement of the U heights building. Okay. I was the receptionist. It was a thrilling job. Imagine

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:02

I was waiting for you to break into one of your classic stories from the Pilates studio. Anyway, what's that show called? Like inside inside the Pilates studio with Jamie Lipton.

Molly 4:14

Is there an actual show you're basing this on?

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:16

That's inside the Actor's Studio? James liftin. Yeah,

Molly 4:20

perfect. Yes, it's just like that. Anyway, on Saturday mornings, if I was working, this was super convenient, because I could take a little break and go out to the parking lot in front of the building where the U district farmers market was it's now on the street next to that building. But anyway, this was Gosh, at that time, I thought of this is really like the biggest farmers market in the city. I think that the farmers market I mean,

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:47

there it is, and certainly was at the time like I think like you district West Seattle, Columbia city where maybe the three biggest at the time.

Molly 4:56

And Matthew actually I remember once seeing it You and Lori and baby Iris. Yeah, like a Baby Bjorn. At

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:06

three of us wearing a Baby Bjorn being carried by a Friendly Giant.

Molly 5:10

God, it's my dream. Yes, there it is again. Anyway. No, I remember standing at some stall at the district farmers market and looking over and I had met you once at that dumb ass chocolate tasting party through egullet. And then you guys had Iris, then I think the second time I ever saw you was in like the booth next to mine at the U district farmers market, but

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:33

I didn't remember what booths they were. I don't remember. If I was buying something cool.

Molly 5:38

I'm sure you were buying something super cool. Maybe cold even?

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:41

Yeah, maybe cold. Robbie, maybe? Probably. Anyway,

Molly 5:44

I didn't speak to you then. I was just a creeper. Who knew who you were. But I didn't say anything. Okay,

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:49

that seems fair.

Molly 5:50

Yeah. Anyway, so I remember seeing kohlrabi for sale at that farmers market. And I remember not buying it. Because I didn't know

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:59

what to do. Oh, this is a good memory laid a timer. I remember not buying this thing.

Molly 6:05

But that was the first time I ever came upon it. You know, of course, it's a really cool looking vegetable, especially when you buy it at the farmers market where it still has all the leaves and

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:16

styles. Yeah, look, can we go back to memory lane for a second? Because I don't realize this would qualify. Literally every day of my life. I have not bought kohlrabi.

Molly 6:26

Your memory lane is long for this. That's

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:29

a lot of days. It's like I don't know, over 10,000 days. Yeah. Wow.

Molly 6:33

Did you just do that math? Yeah. 35 times 365?

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:39

Like, like 30 years is is like 10,000 ish days.

Molly 6:43

Okay, fair enough. All right. Well, let's talk about what this stuff is. Because I think that Well, I think a lot of people like us have like, maybe just started well, actually, let me speak only for myself. I think a lot of people like me have maybe only just tasted this stuff for the first time within the last couple years, or have seen it in places and never really known what the heck it was or what to do with it.

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:07

I've actually had it starting like maybe 15 years ago. You are just showing off now you're trying to make me look bad, but I don't think I've had it recently. But I've always enjoyed it when I had it. And I've and I've mostly had it raw. Yeah. Now

Molly 7:21

my god you're backfilling history.

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:25

This episode. I I was the horticulturalist who developed the first kohlrabi back and the Do you have anything about the the botanical history of kohlrabi because I want to say like the Bronze Age,

Molly 7:38

I don't have any actual dates. So you're supposed to fill those in because you're the horticulturist. Okay, well, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:45

am a Bronze Age kind of guy. Like if you if you see me out on the street, I'll be wearing some sort of bronze plate male and carrying like bronze tools, like like a toolkit full of bronze wrenches and what kind of what kind of early tools did people make out of bronze?

Molly 8:03

I think I don't know probably

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:04

an Advil, I'm gonna go Advil. Okay. If you see me out on the gavel, holding a gavel and an Advil Gatlin one Hill and and and and on the other hand for striking with the gavel. Wait, where was that going to the I guess, I guess

Molly 8:20

your horticulture is you know everything about kohlrabi. I was

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:23

gonna say you should come up and ask you about kohlrabi but if you see somebody holding like a hammer and and and

Molly 8:30

I'm wearing like bronze armor. I don't think that's what people wore in the Bronze Age. I

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:37

don't think so either. It would be incredibly heavy. And like if you see that guy, like dead stay away.

Molly 8:42

Yeah. Okay, can I go on now?

Matthew Amster-Burton 8:44

I think so. Okay. All right.

Molly 8:46

So Oh, okay, we're gonna get to the botanical shit, but alright. The name for this stuff comes from German comes from the German for cabbage, turnip, Colby and cabbage. And I'm not even gonna try to pronounce it but are you with an oom lout B? He is turnip.

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:05

I'm gonna say ruba.

Molly 9:07

Okay, and, and then there's Swiss German, which is Rob Robbie. Okay, whatever. But anyway, it comes from the German for cabbage turnip, which I love the thought of because that's actually sort of what it looks and tastes like. That is great. It's so rare that this stuff makes sense. Well, the beautiful moment

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:24

should take a moment and law. That's a cabbage and

Molly 9:27

yes, yes, there you go. Okay,

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:30

this isn't making a lot more sense to me now.

Molly 9:32

Okay, so co Robbie is also sometimes called a German turnip, but it's it's not a turnip, and we'll get to that later. Here's what's cool about it. Okay. The swollen part of it, which we think of as kohlrabi like the bulbous part, right? Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 9:48

no, I'm ready. So far swollen, bulbous stuff is always cool.

Molly 9:52

The bulbous part is actually the stem, the swollen stem of it and it sits above Round. So, the stem if you see it just you know, like, in the produce section it kind of looks like a root vegetable, right? It looks a lot like a turnip with these, like kind of stumpy stems maybe coming out of it. Don't be

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:13


Molly 10:14

but that bulbous thing is actually the stem.

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:17

Okay, and so it's not right. So right. I'm sitting here like in afraid that you're gonna say the word rhizome and like, crack open a writer's box. Again, not

Molly 10:27

gonna say rise. Okay. I did not see the word rhizome associated with kohlrabi in any I don't think it is. Matthew, did you like that in the agenda I pasted in a photograph? That is captioned kohlrabi grown in a flower pot, England.

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:41

I didn't like it. I loved it. I did not know this. I assumed that the bulbous part. I knew it was an enlarged stem and gorge swollen stem. But I did not know that it sat above ground. That's wild.

Molly 10:54

Yeah. That is why I put this picture here. I mean, other than the fact that I love the

Matthew Amster-Burton 10:58

looks like this looks like a prank picture that like there was somebody had an empty flowerpot and some prankster came by and dropped a kohlrabi just on top of the soil.

Molly 11:07

Maybe we are good. You know, I found this on Wikipedia. I should have double check classic

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:13

Wikipedia prank.

Molly 11:14

I should have cross reference this.

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:17

Okay. Wait, I cut you off though. Before you could option.

Molly 11:19

Could you cross reference this for me while I read this caption? Oh, you mean like see if this is true. Yeah. Could you find pictures of Cole? Robbie growing? Yes. Because now I'm scared that I got punked and I didn't know it. Alright, the caption is kohlrabi grown in a flower pot, comma, England. I love how it sounds like you know, like the little sign next to a work of art in a museum. Okay, I'm

Matthew Amster-Burton 11:43

finding lots of pictures of kohlrabi growing and the bulbous part is above the soil

Molly 11:48

that is fascinating. It's like gravity defying. It's like, what's that? The building in downtown Seattle. Skinny at the bottom and then widens out like four floors up.

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:00

You're right. This is totally gravity defying. The heavy part is on the bottom. It's got some dirt. But other than that it's truly magical.

Molly 12:12

Great anyway. So really, you know, I hear kohlrabi when I

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:18

hear the call. Robbie's singing

Unknown Speaker 12:21

in my head

Molly 12:22

all the time. No, I hear people saying

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:28

Oh, Ravi, partisan, James.

Molly 12:32

No, I've heard people say that kohlrabi looks like an alien and it looks like an alien spaceship, etc. These are very common things that it's compared to. But actually, I'm here to put all those comparisons to rest because what it looks like is Sputnik.

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:47

Yeah, it totally does.

Molly 12:49

Yes. Yeah. Because the stems jut out of the the round part and the stems are really like long and skinny with leaves up at the top. Yeah, it really looks like Sputnik look for Cole Robbie on your groceries produce aisle and in outer space.

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:05

Yeah, and especially looks satellite like when the when the leaves are cut off. And there's just these these like, kind of stiff stems sticking out because Sputnik as far as satellites go, it was not particularly leafy.

Molly 13:19

There are some, what are some of the leaf ear satellites?

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:22

Oh, you know, like, satellite.

Molly 13:34

telescopes. How about the Hubble telescope?

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:36

Yeah, that telescope is it's a leafy telescope. It uses its leaves to Lino leaves capture light. That's the whole point of leaves. And that's the point of a telescope.

Molly 13:48

That's how telescopes work to present Yes, by capturing light in their leaves photosynthesis.

This has been a very informative episode. It's sure as it's not even over yet. All right. So let's talk more about kohlrabi. So it's commonly eaten in German speaking countries and in American states with large ancestral German populations like Minnesota, if we have any Minnesotans listening, I would love for them to jump in. But the interesting thing is that it also shows up in a lot of a lot of countries in Asia. In the Northern part of Vietnam, it is called Sue how. I'm not sure if I'm pronouncing that correctly. In parts of India and Bangladesh. It's all Kopi I'm surely pronouncing that all wrong. It's a very important part of cuisine of Kashmiri cuisine.

Matthew Amster-Burton 14:43

Yes, I did. I did actually know this idea and I was reading a little more about it. I think it's called monje. In yes in Kashmiri cuisine and Manji Hawk is, is like a classic Kashmiri dish. It's like a light curry of kohlrabi made with with like chilies and asafetida And and other spices. That sounds delicious. Yeah, it looks right and use the leaves and the and the enlarged stem. Mm hmm. Yeah. I learned when I was looking at that the two the two most popular vegetables and Kashmiri cuisine are kohlrabi and Lotus fruit. Wow, this, I like both of those. You know,

Molly 15:17

now that I'm sitting here, I'm feeling like my research was sort of, it's sort of left out and important thing like, because because here's the deal. So cool. Robbie, will hold on. We'll come back to other cuisines where it shows up. Okay, but so cool. Robbie is basically a cultivar of wild cabbage. And it's the same species that's brassica Ola, a CA how to say it.

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:42

I think Hola, racy. Ola racy.

Molly 15:44

So that's the same species as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussel, sprouts, collards, all of those. Note that it's not the same species as turnip. That's brassica rapa like,

Matthew Amster-Burton 15:56

I don't mean to brag, but I think I have three of those cruciferous vegetables in my fridge right now.

Molly 16:02

You are such I don't know what word Yeah. Anyway, whatever

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:07

word it was. You're right.

Molly 16:09

So here's the thing kohlrabi was so in nature. Cole Robbie's origin was the same as those other vegetables in the species brassica Ola, racy Ola. racy.

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:21

That's, that's how I said,

Molly 16:23

Okay, in that they're all bred from the same species as the wild cabbage plant.

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:28

So what is the original wild cabbage plant look like? Oh,

Molly 16:31

you know what, if you look up this species brassica Ola raci. on Wikipedia, I believe the picture the primary picture up at the top is a wild cabbage plant.

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:42

Oh, it's very like scrubby.

Molly 16:44

Yes, yes, it looks very, very scrubby. So what's interesting to me when you think about the fact that kohlrabi was created by artificial selection, basically, it was created by artificial selection for lateral stem growth. So you know, producing the swollen, nearly spherical stem shape. But how did this, you know it? So the name obviously, that is that has become dominant, at least in the English speaking world is kohlrabi. That's also you know, clearly the name in the German speaking world. How did it travel to all these places? If it was an artificially selected plant? Like how does this thing show up in like Kashmiri cuisine? Like it's native? It's apparently become like native in Cyprus? I don't know what that means. But

Matthew Amster-Burton 17:34

I don't know the answer. But I mean, there, it seems like there are two possibilities either either, like you know, it, it traveled through like agricultural trade, or it was domesticated malt in multiple places at different times.

Molly 17:48

I wish I knew where it where it was first domesticated, assuming that there was a common, you know, birth story for kohlrabi.

Matthew Amster-Burton 17:57

I mean, it sounds like wild cabbage domestication began in the northern Mediterranean. Okay, and like so it would have spread out from there like in both directions.

Molly 18:07

That's true. Yeah. And you can also find it in Sri Lanka, Romania, Slovakia, so yeah, I mean, it really just kind of like fanned out all over Europe and Asia.

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:18

I was somewhere around the first century AD emerged, the phenotype variation of brasco, Ola racy known as cabbage.

Molly 18:24

Hmm, what at what day that was,

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:28

so that means that means we don't know if like, like, Jesus may have predated cabbage.

Molly 18:33

I highly doubt it. So no, I think cabbage is our original Savior.

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:39

Yeah, it does seem that way sometimes.

Molly 18:49

I'm sure I've just angered some listeners with that. What do you think? Oh,

Matthew Amster-Burton 18:53

I think I think we should strive to anger a certain percentage of listeners every week and I think we do

Molly 18:59

great. Okay, so anyway, let's talk about eating this stuff. Alright, so it can be eaten raw or or cooked and both the stem and leaves can be eaten. So you know, what I kept finding online was people comparing the flavor to like a broccoli stem. But milder and sweeter To me, it really just tastes super cabbage. g like I think it tastes like a really sweet cabbage, a cabbage without the kind of like bitter edge you sometimes get if you just bite into a raw Piece of cake.

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:29

Yeah, I agree with that.

Molly 19:30

Anyway, the texture is similar to a broccoli stem or almost to like Hickam, I really I mean, it's not that juicy, but it's got that same really satisfying crunch, which I think of as a different crunch from a broccoli stem.

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:45

Yeah, that's interesting. Like Yeah, no, it's definitely a crisper crunch than a broccoli stem. Although I love broccoli stamps. Those are great.

Molly 19:52

I love cooked broccoli stems. Yeah, I don't really I don't like raw broccoli.

Matthew Amster-Burton 19:56

I really like broccoli stems not I wouldn't just like snap Knock on one as is. Maybe I would maybe I would just like carry around a broccoli stem in one hand and, and some sort of bronze tool on the other hand and just like chunk off chunks as I'm walking down the street.

Molly 20:11

Yeah, sure, why not, you know? Well, so the skin of the stem is I think it's like actually to thin layers that are fibrous, and they don't soften very much in cooking. So you generally want to peel it away, whether you're eating it raw or cooking it but the nice thing is, is that even though it's so I don't peel it away using a peeler I usually cut it off. But at least it's not like cutting, you know, the, the outside off of a salary route where you lose like 70% of or

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:43

Yeah, no, I mean,

Molly 20:45

with kohlrabi, you've got like a way high ratio of flesh to skin. So that's, that's really nice. Even though you got to cut off the outside, you still got lots of stuff behind.

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:55

Yeah, cuz it's not it's not as like rumbly as as a celery root one time at the farmers market, probably the you district farmers market, I bought a really big celery. And you would think this would be like the beginning of a story and there would be more to the story. But that's the whole story.

Molly 21:12

But here's the question for you. So how much of that celery root was actually edible?

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:15

Because 4%

Molly 21:17

Yeah, because I mean, I love celery root. But the thing is, is like all those little you know, it's like, like the outer surface of it is like wrinkly, almost like a brain and like by the time you cut all that stuff away and cut away like all the little hairy and fibrous and dirty parts that have like infiltrated the toward the middle through the wrinkles in the brain. Am I messing up my metaphor here? No, no, you wind up with like almost nothing.

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:45

Yeah, whereas like if you have a brain almost the whole thing is edible.

Molly 21:50

Yeah. Have you ever eaten brain?

Matthew Amster-Burton 21:53

I have. Yes.

Molly 21:54

It's kind of it's kind of like one of my real culinary like no go zones. Like I i've been presented with the opportunity to eat brain fritters in Italy. And there are so many other things that I would rather eat in Italy. Yeah. or anywhere.

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:12

I have also encountered it in Italian for like, I had like a lamb brain annual loti I think

Molly 22:18

was it? I mean,

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:19

it was good. Like in that case it like just kind of just melts into into like a flavored fat. Yes. But yeah, I don't know. I don't know. Like, now I'm not even gonna go down that road.

Molly 22:28

All right. Well, I'm really glad that we had done this brain episode anyway. Okay, wait. So, Matthew, have you ever eaten kohlrabi? Oh, you did say you've been eating it for 15 years?

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:40

Yeah, meaning like, I ate it a couple times. 15 years ago.

Molly 22:44

So what have you done with it? Okay, so

Matthew Amster-Burton 22:45

first of all, we've been getting a produce box where you can like go online and like swap out things that they're they were going to send you in favor of the things that you want them to send you. You keep swapping out Cole Robbie. Okay. Yes, that's exactly what's happened. But we're not getting one next week. But the following week, I'm going to I'm going to swap in coal Robbie if necessary, unless the season is over or something. And I'm going to do something with it. Like what I want to do with it is, is like you know, cube it or cut it into matchsticks and make like a tart, crunchy salad. Yes, do it. But I would also try making this this Monty Hawk recipe.

Molly 23:22

Yes, that sounds fantastic. Did you see a recipe for it that you Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:27

I'm gonna it's from spice roots calm and I'm gonna I'm gonna put it in the agenda. And we will we'll put it in the show notes we'll link to in the show notes. Okay,

Molly 23:37

um, well, so I get a CSA box from local roots farm. And let's see, two of the last three boxes have contained kohlrabi

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:46

when I do that it's a stem not a root,

Molly 23:49

I'm pretty sure.

Matthew Amster-Burton 23:51

from local stems farm and so dumb.

Molly 23:55

That was so dumb. Anyway, one of my CSA shares had to call Robbie in it, and I think there's still one kicking around the bottom of my crisper drawer.

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:06

But the other cruciferous vegetables do you have in there?

Molly 24:10

You know, right now I've got half of a green cabbage. I've got co Robbie. We had broccoli, but we ate it yesterday.

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:19

I'll still count it

Molly 24:20

and I've got kale, so I think I've got three easily. Okay, yeah, no, we've

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:23

got we've got kale. I think there's a little chunk of broccoli in there. And you know what that might be it there was some green cabbage that turned into lumpia that got finished off today.

Molly 24:35

Wait, it just turned into lupia does that it was great.

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:38

Yeah, it was it was one of those you know afraid of refrigerator miracle. You open your fridge and like, like a cabbage has turned into a spring roll or like an eggplant is turned into a cake. This has been happening a lot on Instagram. I hear. Ah,

Molly 24:51

yes, yes, I've heard of this. It hasn't yet happened to me. I go open my fridge and nothing

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:56

in your fridge might be a cake.

Molly 24:58

I can't wait. Find out. Okay, so anyway, we've been getting a lot of cold Robbie and I gotta say, I have mostly been enjoying eating it raw. It's really grown on me. So I have Well, I should say we fed the the leaves to the guinea pigs,

Matthew Amster-Burton 25:17

you know, you can eat the leaves, right? Yes. I'm not saying that you shouldn't give nice things to your guinea pigs. They're adorable.

Molly 25:24

Do you know what guinea pigs really like? Are our guinea pigs they love fennel tops.

Matthew Amster-Burton 25:29

Oh, nice.

Molly 25:30

Oh my god, it's so cute to see how like, you give them a little pile of a whole bunch of different you know, like, stuff that you got kicking around the fridge and they go for the fennel tops first every time.

Matthew Amster-Burton 25:40

But like, will they will they like eat stuff that you put into their cage? Or do you have to like hold it and like feed it into their mouths like, oh, wood chipper?

Molly 25:48

Well, so actually, like getting them comfortable around you takes quite a bit of work. So they only occasionally will contentedly eat out of our hands.

Matthew Amster-Burton 25:58

Oh, that's usually because once we once we pet sat for a pair of guinea pigs for a week and they would eat carrots out of our hands immediately.

Molly 26:06

So I think that those were probably older and more tame than ours are like we got ours as like newly weaned, you know, okay,

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:15

teenage pigs alternatively, like everyone in my family is like a Dr. Doolittle type and the animals just all the animals love us.

Molly 26:22

I don't actually think that's true. I think he just had some really well well broken in guinea pigs.

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:29

The other day I was out for a walk and I was like walking along looking at my phone and like, paused and looked up and there was a rabbit sitting on the sidewalk facing me like two feet away just staring at me. And then it hopped off.

Molly 26:42

Was it like wearing a hat? Or was that was the Mad Hatter anywhere nearby? Or no, but

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:47

you get invited to a tea party. It was like six feet tall and I was inebriated.

Molly 26:53

Was Jake Gyllenhaal anywhere nearby Jake was was it Donnie Darko?

Matthew Amster-Burton 26:58

I was weird. Like, I don't know what what if you're talking about like a historical event or something, but I was actually walking with my friend Jake Gyllenhaal.

Molly 27:09

Have you not seen Donnie Darko? Well, I

Matthew Amster-Burton 27:11

haven't seen it but I do know that it's a movie involving a scary rabbit. So just playing dumb for the sake of the joke. Okay, I have friends with Jake Gyllenhaal.

Molly 27:22

Tell you what I like to do with Cole route. Okay. All right. So I gotta admit, I was not very excited to get this stuff in my CSA box. But the first time I got it we happened to have some like, like ranch dip sitting around like sour cream with ranch powder mixed in. Oh sure. Right. Okay, so right away I cut up the coal Robbie and it is delicious as like you know accreditated type thing like dipped in dip?

Matthew Amster-Burton 27:49

Yeah, of course.

Molly 27:50

Especially if you're somebody who doesn't mind rot like I don't really love raw cauliflower or broccoli. I will eat them but I don't love them. But they show up on pretty much every crudity platter everywhere. I don't know why kohlrabi isn't showing up because it is tastier than both of them.

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:06

Yeah, as a raw vegetable. Absolutely. I think there's no question in my mind.

Molly 28:11

Yeah. So anyway, yeah, for sure, use it as a crudity. I then found that I just really kind of didn't mind just sort of like chomping on it while I was making dinner or whatever the way that you know, I don't know you might eat some carrot sticks leftover from your kid's lunch or whatever. every bit as delicious and I think particularly you know, if you're getting them like you know, from a farm or farmers market or something

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:39

from local

Molly 28:40

from local stamps, local swollen steps. Anyway, so yeah, people you can use them you can also cut them up in many different ways cubed julienned slice thinly you could probably shave them on a mandolin

Matthew Amster-Burton 28:54

scribe Cole robbia swole you can use

Molly 28:58

slaws imagine you could do almost like a like a celery Remo LOD thing with cold

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:03

I think you absolutely could.

Molly 29:05

So apparently in Cyprus, they serve Rocco Robbie as an appetizer just sprinkled with lemon and salt.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:11

Yeah, no any crunchy vegetable like that I like it with with a real tart hit of acid or vinegar or citrus juice.

Molly 29:18

You know where I think I would really get into kohlrabi. Where? So in Cyprus for one thing, I'm going to Cyprus now to eat kohlrabi. No, you know how with wings, you get your celery, your carrots and your blue cheese. I mean your blue cheese dressing. I think we should be eating cold Robbie with our spicy wings. Oh, that's

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:40

right. Yeah, yeah.

Molly 29:42

With our hot wings and our blue cheese dressing. Cole Robbie all the way.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:45

I am going to send a letter. mail a letter to Wild Wings.

Molly 29:51

Yeah. Oh, yes.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:52

Yeah, you know, our favorite restaurant.

Molly 29:55

Anyway, Matthew, I remember when we did a turnip episode. You that you really like eating raw turnip.

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:02

Oh, this was something my mom would give me as a treat when I was a kid. I don't know, like what she was doing.

Molly 30:08

Seriously. This sounds like some sort of sad tale of an orphanage in like the 1800s or something.

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:16

Well, I grew up in one of those documentaries, like, Can we force people to live like in olden times and watch them suffer on BBC? Oh, you're like

Molly 30:26

those people who live in Port Townsend? Like they live in the 1800s with their corsets. And have you read about those people?

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:33

No. Oh,

Molly 30:34

yeah, there's a couple in Port Townsend, Washington, a man and a woman at least, maybe there are other people who've joined them, but they live their whole lives like they're in the 1800s.

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:47

I mean, I don't like the part about the course it's at all

Molly 30:50

Yeah, you you can find pictures of them online. It's such a special strange version of privilege. They're living.

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:58

Yeah, that's That's odd. Yeah. So anyway, so that's how I grew up, like corseted, and, and kohlrabi. What was Wait, what was I can't remember what started what kicked off.

Molly 31:09

No eating raw turnip.

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:10

Right. Right. So so this is now back to the truth. This is our second go back to the truth. I'm not even sure what my mom was making with turnips. But I remember vividly when I was, you know, like in the single digits age wise, her passing me like a slice of raw turnip and saying, try this. I think you'll like it. And I did.

Molly 31:28

It must have been you know, knowing Judy amster she she had the hook up on where to get some, like extra fresh and sweet turnips.

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:37

Oh, yeah. You know, she she definitely knew where to find local stems. Yeah, turnips, probably a root.

Molly 31:42

Yeah. Okay. Anyway, but uh, yeah, I have to say I way prefer raw raw kohlrabi over raw turnips. So I'm gonna put that out there. Let's talk about cooked kohlrabi.

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:53

Yeah, I remember back in the eagala days, like one time getting some kohlrabi like, or seeing kohlrabi at the farmers market and asking, like, what do I do with like, how do I cook this stuff? And with some eagle eyed person, like heartily responding like you don't cook it, dear. But guess what you do?

Molly 32:12

You do? Alright, so you can use this in so many places.

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:17

I mean, frankly, Kashmir,

Molly 32:20

yes, you can treat it like a root vegetable. Frankly, you can do pretty much anything with it that you could do with like a parsnip or with a potato even. So you can cube it and put it in soups like a chunky soup. You can puree it into soups. You could roast it really good roasted at high temperature like broccoli. It has quite a bit of water in it. Yeah, it was difficult for me to get roasted kohlrabi to brown it doesn't get as you know when you roast turnips how they get very, almost like juicy. Yeah, it doesn't get quite that soft. Oh, but yeah, I've

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:53

got turnips. In addition to those cruciferous vegetables. I have some Hakurei turnips that I'm gonna roast or glaze tonight. But I glazed kohlrabi seems like it would be really tasty.

Molly 33:06

I think it would be. I think it would be it doesn't it's not going to get a silky as like a wedge of turnip, but the flavor would be lovely. As we've already discussed, it works well with spices that you might commonly think of for Indian food. And then you know, I saw somebody recommend that you can steam it if you're into steaming vegetables, but then once you've steamed it you can do any number of things with it. You can mash it apparently you can take a coal Robbie and make a fritter from it like a mash. Up fritter

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:35

you what you wrote on the agenda was You can also steam it if you like steaming vegetables. Yeah, Sean's wired,

Molly 33:41

little disdainful was. I mean, I say that having grown up with, you know, with a mom in the 80s, who was into low fat cooking and steamed everything okay. Yeah. So I got I got to own where I come from.

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:55

Yeah. I grew up in the 1800s. And we didn't have steam.

Molly 34:00

That's true. Except for engines.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:02

We just had do yeah, we had steam engines. That's true.

Molly 34:05

Anyway, so yeah. Oh, and then the leaves of course the leaves are edible and they can be used anywhere you would use kale or collard greens.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:13

Can you make chips out of them?

Molly 34:14

Did I tell you that I made kale chips for the first time in my life last week?

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:18

No, I was thinking about making kale chips yesterday and then I ran out of time. I don't I've been telling really like vivid stories. There was the time I bought a celery root. There was the time I almost made kale chips.

Molly 34:34

There were all the days that you took me by

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:39

myself as a storyteller first and foremost.

Molly 34:44

Now I made kale chips for the first time last week because I'm starting to get really tired of getting kale every single week for CSA and anyway so I made kale chips and I decided to look up some like different ideas for flavoring kale chips, because Cuz I just wanted something more interesting than olive oil and salt. So I did mine with a kind of made a slurry of miso and soy sauce and

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:09

olive oil. Oh, that sounds good.

Molly 35:11

And I was worried that it was gonna that it would make it hard for the chips to get crispy, right? Because that's a lot of liquid. Yeah, but the chips got very crispy I used a recipe or a method from I believe the kitchen.com where they recommended roasting at a pretty low temp and for a longer period than you might think like three days for three days. Now 300 degrees for longer than I would have expected. And all the liquid that was in this you know, the seasoning mixture totally evaporated and I had really crispy kale chips. However, they tasted like pure punishment. Like I did not I didn't like it like I don't like I didn't like that flavor of kale it just tasted really dark green even with me so and soy sauce.

Matthew Amster-Burton 36:00

I didn't like it was like I was gonna say I I've definitely had kale chips that I enjoyed. I was gonna suggest just like some straight MSG on there, I think would probably be great. I might do a little kale chip experimentation and let you know what happens when you say when you say they take longer than you expected i'd now I'm genuinely curious whether that means like 25 minutes or like two hours. Well, it

Molly 36:23

was like 25 minutes, and I'm gonna I'm gonna pull up this recipe and and and we'll link to it.

Matthew Amster-Burton 36:28

Okay, well, the link to this recipe you didn't like?

Molly 36:32

Great. This is called How to make kale chips you actually want to eat. Okay, so you bake at 300 for about 20 minutes. Okay. Yeah, it's not it's actually not as long as you might think. I mean, frankly, when I roast broccoli or something I do, like 15 minutes at 425.

Matthew Amster-Burton 36:50

Okay, I might make some kale chips tonight. We'll see how my schedule works out. I might ask teenager the show Iris if they would be in charge of baking some kale chips tonight. Lesson before dinner.

Molly 37:05

I love this about you love pandemic singing Matthew. Uh huh.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:09

Yeah, it's, I don't think anyone actually likes this.

Molly 37:12

Oh, okay. Okay. Anyway, but um, yeah, I really want to hear more about your kale chip experience because I gotta say I just did not care for the taste of kale cooked that way. I didn't like the flavor it brought out we've done a kale episode. Like if I make some kale chips, and I like them. And then I tell you and you try the the way I made

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:34

kale chips episode. Great. Okay, that was the longest possible way of pitching that idea.

Molly 37:39

We're only like five years behind the trends as usual.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:42

I think it might be more than five years. Thank

Molly 37:45

you might be right. Okay. Anyway, Matthew, I think we've talked enough. This has been our co Robbie episode.

Matthew Amster-Burton 37:51

Yeah, I want to hear how your coal robbing which local stems, local roots and local leaves are sustaining you at this time. facebook.com slash build MK podcast, let us know. You can find us also at Spielberg podcast.com. in the show notes in your podcast player. That's where we'll link to this Monty Hawk recipe. kohlrabi cooked in the Kashmiri style. And we'll link to that kale chips article. And something else we said we would link to in the show producer Abby has already done it. Okay, cool. By the way, producer is producer Abbey circuit tele Yes, legally changed her first name to producer.

Molly 38:32

It's about time you know, I should announce to the listeners that I've changed my first name to host and I've changed my name to Mr. Cool. Wow, you're full of good jokes.

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:51

No. I owed out to be treated that way on my own. Did you say you're Mr. Cool? No.

Molly 39:03

I said I'm host

Matthew Amster-Burton 39:04

and he's Mr. Cool. Okay, that's us. Yes. See you next time.

Molly 39:09


Your voice sounds somewhat robotic.