Sunday, 1 December 2013

Thai Flavours Kohlrabi with Minced Pork (泰式芥蘭頭炒豬肉)

At this point, I will admit that I'm not sure what kohlrabi is called in Chinese, so I hope my dodgy memory serves me correctly here - because Google Translate said something I didn't recognise at all... I also have no idea whether kohlrabi features in Thai cuisine, but there was fish sauce, chilli and sugar in it, so it was more Thai than anything else.....

I would like to see kohlrabi available more widely - it's relatively easy to grow, and has a mild, slightly cabbagey taste. I like to cut it into sticks, stir-fry it, then add some water to the wok, cover and steam it until it still has some bite. You can add all sorts of flavours to it (but not fermented tofu!). With the minced pork, I fancied chillis, then the fish sauce seemed a logical addition.



  • 2-3 small kohlrabi (I bought one large, but the small ones are a bit less fibrous)
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 red chilli, finely sliced (leave the seeds in if you want heat)
  • 150g pork mince
  • 2cm cube ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • A pinch of ground white pepper
  • 1-2 shakes of light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cornflour + additional for thickening
  • A few drops sesame oil
  • Sunflower oil for frying
Serves 4



  • Squeeze the grated ginger juice over the minced pork. Add a shake of ground white pepper, 1 tsp corn flour, 1-2 shakes of light soy sauce and a few drops of sunflower oil. Cover and leave to marindade for at least 30 minutes
  • Cut the top and bottom off the kohlrabi, and peel the skin layer off. Slice in half down the length of the kohlrabi, then cut down the length into sticks, approx. 1cm square at the top
  • Heat 1 tbsp sunflower oil in a wok until very hot. Add the pork mince and stir-fry until it is sealed, and has taken on some colour
  • Add the kohlrabi, chopped garlic and chilli to the wok and stir-fry rapidly for a minute or two, until the ingredients are mixed, aromatic and coated in oil. Take care not to let the garlic catch and burn
  • Add the Thai fish sauce, sugar, and 50ml water. Bring the mixture to the boil, then cover and boil gently for 7-8 minutes, until the kohlrabi is soft, but retains some bite
  • Thicken the sauce by adding 1/2 tsp cornflour mixed with a little water, if required, and bringing back to the boil
  • Remove from the heat, add a few drops of sesame oil. Stir and serve immediately

Thai Flavours Kohlrabi with Minced Pork (泰式芥蘭頭炒豬肉)

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