Kohlrabi, gherkin and apple salad

If you have not used kohlrabi before, give it a go. Its flavour hovers between cabbage, radish and broccoli and it looks like … errrrm … kohlrabi. It is technically an autumn vegetable but you can get hold of it earlier – it’s just a bit smaller. It can be eaten cooked or raw; we have gone for raw in this recipe to create a crunchy salad. Try serving it with a Scotch duck egg (see here); the crunchiness will go well with the soft egg.
For a quick variation, try using different apples, such as Cox’s or Granny Smith, but keep them on the tarter side. You could also change the cider vinegar to white wine vinegar instead – go ahead and experiment.

80ml sunflower oil
2 tbsp cider vinegar
50g brown sugar
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 kohlrabi, the size of a tennis ball (funny, some are a similar colour, too)
small jar of gherkins
2 Braeburn apples
small amount of chives – we are talking 6 stems
First make the simple dressing, to allow time for the sugar to dissolve, which in turn will balance the acidity. Simply put the oil, vinegar and sugar in a plastic bowl, season with salt and black pepper, mix and set aside. Stir occasionally and, by the time you have prepared everything else, it should be done.
Now the kohlrabi. Take a small slice from the top and bottom. With a sharp knife or decent peeler, remove the skin, as you would for a turnip. The next step is to take thin (about 5mm) slices of the kohlrabi, lay them flat, then slice into sticks.
Stir the sticks of kohlrabi into the dressing. Then slice 10 of the gherkins, each one into three is enough. Pop into the bowl.
Cut the apples into quarters, but do not peel, as the skin gives a good colour. With a sharp knife, slice out the core. Lay the quarters on a chopping board and slice into thin wedges; immediately add them to the bowl and gently mix so they don’t discolour.
Finally, using a pair of sharp scissors (always good to have around, especially for herbs), finely snip the chives into the bowl and gently mix.
Your salad is now ready to serve. It will not keep for long, as the apples will soften and discolour eventually, so try to use it as soon as possible for the optimum crunch.