Serve perfect discs of kohlrabi in this refreshing Tree Tomato Salad to impress your guests. Add splashes of balsamic glaze and serve with sweet pops of pomegranate and peppery radishes. This salad is made for entertaining!
Why You’ll Love This Tree Tomato Salad
The first few times I ate kohlrabi, I had no idea I was even eating it. It was mixed through a slaw, and it was so delicious I just wolfed it down! For this recipe, I wanted to showcase the vegetable by slicing it as is and forming the base of the salad.
During the winter, my love affair with the tree tomato continues, and I can’t help but use it as often as I can in dishes. Most people use it in sweet dishes, just like we have with our Cherry Tamarillo Salad with Lemon Thyme but adding it fresh into salads is just so delicious!
The combination of the kohlrabi and tree tomato is wonderful. Combining the thick balsamic glaze with the soft and juicy flesh of the tree tomato and the crunchy and slight peppery bite of the kohlrabi is heavenly!
Oh, and did I mention there is no cooking required?
What is Kohlrabi?
Kohlrabi, also called cabbage turnip (as the Germans call it) or German turnip, is part of the cabbage family. It is closely related to other common vegetables such as kale, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower.
The part of the kohlrabi that everyone eats is the bulb which is a funny, knobby looking thing that looks very much like a turnip. My daughter reckons it resembles the head of a cartoon alien! Kohlrabi also has some edible leaves, but there’s not much of it and is usually not as popular.
The etymology of the word suggests that ‘kohl’ is the German word for cabbage and “rabi’ is the Swiss-German variant for turnip. As mentioned above, the bulb only looks like a turnip but is not related to it.
It is a really popular vegetable in German-speaking nations, some countries in Eastern Europe and has even made its way to Vietnam and India.
What Does Kohlrabi Taste Like?
Kohlrabi comes in green, purple or white with very little difference in tastes between them all. The most common variety would be green, which you’ll be able to find in your supermarket all year round.
The skin is quite tough and woody and does need to be removed before consumption. You can simply use a peeler but may have to run through it a couple of times to make sure the 2 fibrous layers have been removed, or you can use a knife and cut the skin off.
Kohlrabi can be eaten raw, and its texture is crisp and slightly crunchy, resembling that of a cabbage heart or broccoli stem. It’s mild, slightly sweet, with a tinge of peppery notes. It reminds me of a more “vegetable” version of an apple but, of course, not as sweet.
It is a fantastic vegetable to use in salads and particularly popular in the many different versions of slaws. In fact, you can add it to our Vegan Coleslaw with Pear and Carrot recipe. Just use a mandolin to slice them thinly and then cut them up into thin matchsticks.
Why Tree Tomatoes are the Best
Tree tomatoes are simply so delicious. With its slight tart yet sweet flesh, I love nothing more than just to cut it in half and scoop it out. I can literally smash a few in one sitting. My daughter likes them peeled, and she’d pick them up whole and just bite into them.
Tree tomato recipes are aplenty, but I don’t think it has done the savoury world justice—plenty of cakes, puddings, chutneys, etc. but not enough savoury options. So, to add to the tree tomato recipe collection, I just had to make another tree tomato salad.
The health benefits of tree tomatoes are fantastic too and all the more the reason to eat them when they are in season! They are jam packed with essential vitamins, are great for your skin, boost your immune system and are good for your heart and eyesight.
Flavour/Texture: This salad has a lot of crunch as all the components are raw. The kohlrabi discs, mini bell peppers, radish and pomegranate offer those lovely crunchy bits, while the tree tomato is lovely and soft.
Flavour wise, it is incredibly refreshing. No greasy finishes or charred flavours. Everything works in unison with the pomegranate, tree tomato and balsamic glaze, offering sweet yet tart tastes which balance well with the kohlrabi and radish. Love the delicate wisps of snow pea sprouts as they give us those green, grassy flavours.
Ease: The only tricky part about this salad is peeling the tree tomatoes. It requires blanching in hot water to help separate the skin from the flesh enough to peel back easily with a paring knife. Other than that, everything is just a quick chop or whack!
Time: It takes 25 minutes to put this salad together, but most of that time is peeling the tree tomatoes. I promise you it’s well worth the effort!
Tree tomato: Also known as tamarillo, tree tomatoes are absolutely delicious. They are sweet yet tart, and their centre has a gel-like consistency which is super juicy. It has a slight savoury taste which makes for a great addition to any salad.
Pomegranate: Just get a small pomegranate for this salad or save some for a fruit salad later. For better portion control, albeit more expensive, you can just buy the pre-packed arils.
Pomegranate offers fruity sweetness and adds to the freshness of the recipe.
Red radish: Love having thin slices of red radish complement the flavours of salads. Those peppery notes are fantastic, which is well balanced out by the other sweet ingredients.
Mini bell peppers: Loving the colours that mini bell peppers have to offer. Try getting a few different colours as they do usually come in a pack of red, orange and yellow varieties. Just gives the salad that extra vibrancy.
Kohlrabi: This alien-looking bulb of a vegetable may not be much to look at, but they are really good to eat! Raw kohlrabi is crunchy and peppery, and if sliced thinly, they make a great base to house the salad on top.
Snow pea sprouts: You may have already gathered we love snow pea sprouts. Its leaves are delicate, and the stems are thin and provide a slight crunch. I love the wispiness of this sprout as it gives the salad a slightly different texture.
Balsamic glaze: This is sweet, sticky nectar that simply makes everything taste better! Drizzle over this raw salad to pull everything together. I challenge you to stick to the recommended dose and not double it!
Olive oil: Use good olive oil for the dressing.
White wine vinegar: Making a very simple white wine vinaigrette so as not to complicate the flavours of all the fresh ingredients. Letting them sing!
How To Peel Tree Tomatoes
Bring a kettle of water to the boil.
Cut a small cross at the bottom of the tree tomato and place inside a heatproof bowl. Pour the boiling water over the tree tomato until fully submerged. Leave it for 3-4 minutes.
Remove the tree tomato and run under cold water.
The skin would have curled a little. Using a paring knife or your fingers, peel the skin.
Cut off the stem and cut the tree tomatoes into quarters. Set aside.
How to Prepare the Rest of the Ingredients
Deseed the pomegranate.
Cut red radish into thin slices.
Cut the mini bell peppers in half. Remove the seeds and slice into thin matchsticks.
Peel or cut the skin off the kohlrabi. Using a mandoline, cut into large thin slices. Then using a large cookie cutter, cut out large circles.
How to Make White Wine Vinaigrette
In a small mixing bowl, add the olive oil and white wine vinegar.
Mix until well combined.
How To Assemble Tree Tomato Salad
This is an individually plated salad, so get 4 small plates. By serving this salad in smaller portions, you’re able to play around with your presentation a little more instead of just piling it in a heap for everyone to share.
Add the red radish, bell peppers, and snow pea sprouts in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
Add the dressing and season with salt and pepper to taste.
On each plate, add 1 ½ tbsp of balsamic glaze by just splattering it around. Flick your wrists and make a bit of a mess!
Then place 4-5 large round kohlrabi on top of the balsamic glaze per plate.
Divide the salad in the mixing bowl into 4 and place it as a heap on top of the kohlrabi.
Each plate is to then get 4 quarters of tree tomatoes and a sprinkle of pomegranate arils.
Add some fresh pepper to taste on each plate.
Variations and Substitutions
Serving as one salad: This salad is presented as an individually plated salad that can be served as an entrée/starter or served together with the main meal. Of course, this is not necessary but is just a fun way to create some eye pleasing plating.
Types of bell peppers: Try and get a medley of mini bell peppers to give your salad a little colour. If you can’t find any mini bell peppers, you can get regular bell peppers, but perhaps try and find small ones so you can mix up the colours. You can always use leftovers for dinner the next day.
Kohlrabi replacement: Try daikon or turnips. They will be a bit more peppery than the kohlrabi, but the rest of the ingredients will work well with these vegetables.
Snow pea sprout substitute: If you can’t find snow pea sprouts, you can try broccoli sprouts or mung bean sprouts.
Great Mains for This Salad
Blackened cod: This recipe uses a homemade blackening seasoning to create the perfect crust on the outside and a flaky inside. The Cajun-style seasoning can be made mild or spicy, so don’t shy away from its bold flavour. To help balance out the flavours, serve it up with this refreshing tree tomato salad.
Mushroom aglio olio: This pasta recipe is a quick, easy and budget friendly dinner. With just six ingredients it’s on the table in twenty minutes. Accompanied by an equally easy to make tree tomato salad that doesn’t require any cooking, this is a fabulous meal for the family!
Stuffed chicken breast: This recipe is perfect for a quick yet elegant meal that plates perfectly on a weeknight or at your next dinner party. Prosciutto and cream cheese are the perfect pairing. To make the meal even more exciting serve it up with a sweet and tangy tree tomato salad that will surely impress your guests!
Frequently Asked Questions
Balsamic glaze is balsamic vinegar cooked over time with an added sweetener until it takes on a thick, sticky consistency. The sweetener can be ingredients such as honey, brown sugar or maple syrup. Hence it’s tart and sweet flavours.
More often than not, we don’t use the whole pomegranate for a salad. In most cases, it’s because they are huge, and we simply can’t buy half a pomegranate.
Some great ideas for finishing leftover arils would be to simply eat it on its own, add it to a fruit salad or try some of these fantastic salads with pomegranate:
Pomegranate Cauliflower Salad with Chestnuts
Beetroot Salad with Radicchio and Pomegranate
Pomegranate, Barley and Freekeh Salad
Yes, you can and very easily too. As there are no cooked components to this recipe, it will keep well. Just dress it when it’s time to eat.
Absolutely! This is perhaps one of the best salads to bring to a potluck party as you don’t have to worry about soggy elements or cooked ingredients going soft. Pack the balsamic glaze and the salad dressing separately. Dress when it’s time to eat.
You can serve this salad as a starter or an entrée. Let your guests enjoy these wonderful ingredients on their own without having to mix them with other food on the table.
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Tree Tomato Salad with Kohlrabi
- 4 tree tomato, (tamarillo)
- 1 pomegranate
- 4 radish
- 4 bell peppers, mini
- 1 kohlrabi
- 60 g snow pea sprouts
- 6 tbsp balsamic glaze
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1½ tbsp white wine vinegar
Click on the toggle below for conversion to US Cooking Units.
- Bring a kettle of water to the boil.
- Cut a small cross at the bottom of the tree tomato and place inside a heatproof bowl. Pour the boiling water over the tree tomato until fully submerged. Leave it for 3-4 minutes. Remove the tree tomato and run under cold water. The skin would have curled a little. Using a paring knife or your fingers, peel the skin.
- Cut off the stem and cut the tree tomatoes into quarters. Set aside.
- Deseed the pomegranate.
- Cut red radish into thin slices.
- Cut the mini bell peppers in half. Remove the seeds and slice into thin matchsticks.
- Peel or cut the skin off the kohlrabi. Using a mandoline, cut into large thin slices. Then using a large cookie cutter, cut out large circles.
- In a small mixing bowl, add the olive oil and white wine vinegar.
- Mix until well combined.
- This is an individually plated salad, so use 4 small plates.
- Add the red radish, bell peppers, and snow pea sprouts to a medium sized mixing bowl.
- Add the dressing and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- On each plate, add 1 ½ tbsp of balsamic glaze by just splattering it around. Flick your wrists and make a bit of a mess!
- Then place 4-5 large round kohlrabi on top of the balsamic glaze per plate.
- Divide the salad in the mixing bowl into 4 and place as a heap on top of the kohlrabi.
- Each plate is to then get 4 quarters of tree tomatoes and a sprinkle of pomegranate arils.
- Add some fresh pepper to taste on each plate.
- This salad is presented as an individually plated salad that can be served as an entrée/starter or served together with the main meal. Of course, this is not necessary but is just a fun way to create some eye pleasing plating.
- Try and get a medley of mini bell peppers to give your salad a little colour.
- Feel free to cut the slices of kohlrabi into any shape! During the festive season, it would be fun to use those Christmas cookie cutters. Get the kids to do it for you, and you might even be able to make them eat raw kohlrabi!
- If you can’t find snow pea sprouts, you can try broccoli sprouts or mung bean sprouts.
*Disclaimer: Nutritional information provided is an estimate only and generated by an online calculator.
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