We might as well just say it: kohlrabi is a little weird. The name literally means "cabbage turnip" in German (makes sense, right?), and they're as common as cabbages and turnips themselves in Eastern Europe, where they've been around for centuries. Stateside, though, they're a little more unusual -- "you'd think it had just landed on earth," Elizabeth Scneider says in Uncommon Fruits & Vegetables: A Commonsense Guide -- so farmers' markets and CSA boxes are your best bet for the hardy, prolific stems.
Today we're taking a nose dive into the salad bowl with a half-dozen varieties of dark leafy greens. These plants come from a few different plant families -- arugula, kale, and collards are Brassicas, spinach and chard are in the Amaranth family, and dandelion is from the family Asteraceae -- but they share certain essential characteristics in the kitchen: all can be enjoyed raw or cooked, and they're all hardier than the fragile salad greens of spring.
Gena Hamshaw of the blog Choosing Raw eats a mostly raw, vegan diet without losing time, money, or her sanity. Let her show you how to make "rabbit food" taste delicious and satisfying every other Thursday on FOOD52. Today: Gena turns the traditional wrap on its head by putting the greens on the outside, with a recipe for Collard Wraps with Herbed Cashew Spread and Roast Peppers.
There's a secret special ingredient snuck in with the Greenmarket fare in today's peek into Amanda's kids' lunchboxes. Here's what they're having, straight from Amanda herself: "Smoked ham topped with sautéed turnip greens, kale, and fresh garlic. I think a few asparagus spears are snuck in there as well. The local strawberries are nice this year so I've been putting them in every lunch -- sometimes whole, sometimes sliced and mixed with yogurt, and sometimes on top of stewed rhubarb. My kids went to a birthday party where there was a piñata, thus the lollipop and Hershey's Chocolate. I let our kids have commercial candy now and then, but I draw the line at fast food!"
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