Kale has certainly had a moment, but it’s time to crown the new queen of the farmers market--and our vote is for kale's funny looking cousin, kohlrabi, or perhaps one of the other funky veggies on this list. Of course, there are many deserving fall vegetables found at the farmers market (or in your own autumn garden); and you may not have heard of many of them....until now, that is. Prepare to get cooking!
Image: Kohlrabi via Shutterstock
Kohlrabi is part of the Brassica family of vegetables. In fact, many fall vegetables are Brassicas--think cabbage, kale, and broccoli. Both the purple and white variety of kohlrabi are common, and its bright taste is a cross between jicama, broccoli, celery, and a hint of crisp autumn apple. It can be eaten raw or cooked, and both the bulb (peel it first) and leaves are edible. Toss thin slices of the bulb in salads, make roasted kohlrabi fries with the bulb, or saute the leaves as you would kale.
2. Broccoli Rabe
Image: Broccoli Rabe via Shutterstock
Broccoli rabe is often confused with broccolini, which is nothing more baby broccoli. Broccoli rabe is a completely different vegetable than broccoli(ni) and is related to the turnip. It is very popular vegetable in Italy and is very commonly served sauteed there. It has a delicious bitter taste that pairs well with rich fall foods.
3. Fennel Bulb
Image: Fennel via Shutterstock
Fennel is a flowering herb related to the carrot. It doesn’t look like much--it looks like the end of a stalk of celery-- but it packs a lot of flavor and crunch. Fennel has a bright, sweet anise flavor, and it can be eaten raw or cooked. Eat it with dip, toss it a salad, roast it with other root fall vegetables, or toss it into chicken noodle soup. It is a versatile flavor enhancer with many uses in your autumn kitchen.
4. Hakurei Turnips
Image: Hakurei Turnips via timsackton
Hakurei turnips are a Japanese variety of white turnips. Often called “salad turnips," they are sweeter and more delicate than other varieties of turnips. If you tried turnips before and didn’t like them, give Hakurei turnips a try. Try them raw in a salad or lightly saute them--they can be roasted, but this cooking method is often an overkill for these delicate turnips. The greens can also be eaten and taste best with a quick saute.
5. Delicata Squash
Image: Delicata Squash via Shutterstock
If you like winter squash and pumpkins, but not the work and time of cooking them, then try delicata squash. Just like with acorn squash, the skin of the delicata is edible, which is certainly a huge time saver. Delicata has a creamy, sweet, and nutty flavor. If you like butternut, you will love delicata. Cut it half and roast it in the oven for a super easy preparation. Our favorite cooking method is to slice it thin and saute it in coconut oil until soft and slightly browned for a treat that tastes like it should be bad for you, but of course, is a healthy delicacy.
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Image: Selection of Vegetables via Shutterstock