Radishes are a greatly under appreciated vegetable, too often thoughtlessly tossed into a salad or onto a relish plate as an afterthought. This healthy veggie is a ready source of nutrients and features a peppery flavor and lovely crispness. Radishes deserve more than just second-rate billing, so we’ve put together these incredible recipes to make radishes a rave-worthy addition to your dinner table.
Types of radishes
Though the most well-known and easy to find radish is the oval shaped red-skinned, white-flesh radish, there are many other varieties, including the long white daikon radish, the Burpee white, champion, plum purple, French breakfast, and round black Spanish. Different varieties are planted during different seasons, and all are relatively easy and quick to grow. Visit your local nursery to peruse the selection of seeds available, and frequent your local farmers’ market to get a taste of the wide variety, if radishes are grown in your area.
A member of the cancer-fighting Brassica family, along with cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts, radishes are a good source of vitamin C and minerals, such as iron, potassium, magnesium, copper, sulphur, folate and iodine, in amounts dependent on the variety of radish. The readily available red radish is typically served raw, but it and the other types of radishes can also be cooked in a variety of tasty ways. You can also cook radish greens for an extra dose of flavorful nutrition.
Check out these tasty radish recipes that will likely inspire you to give this flvorful, healthful root veggie a starring role in your next meal.
Fresh Radish Salad
This colorful salad is best eaten the day it is made when the vegetables are at their peak crispness. Pair it with your favorite grilled meats to round your meal out with a lovely crunch.
Juice and grated zest from 1 small lemon
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1 to 2 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Pinch red pepper flakes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 small bunch radishes, trimmed, very thinly sliced
1 cup thinly sliced cucumber, cut crosswise
1 cup very thinly sliced carrot, cut crosswise
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1. In a large bowl, whisk together lemon juice, lemon zest, honey, oil, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Add radishes, cucumber, carrot and parsley to the bowl and toss to coat. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
Makes 3 cups
Inspired by a pickled radish recipe from the beloved and much-missed Gourmet magazine (November 2007), this recipe is a fitting match for Asian entrees, particularly succulent Asian-spiced meats.
Pickled radish will give off a pungent odor when you open the container; stay strong, the smell is no indication of the daikon’s flavor and will quick dissipate.
2 pounds daikon radishes, peeled, halved, sliced crosswise
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced gingerroot
1. In a large nonreactive bowl, sprinkle radishes with salt, tossing to coat. Set aside for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Drain in a colander, but do not rinse. Return to bowl.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, sugar, garlic and ginger, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Pour over radish slices and toss to thoroughly coat.
3. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate, stirring occasionally, for at least 12 hours before serving. Keep refrigerated for up to 3 weeks.
Despite fresh radishes most commonly being a salad ingredient, these peppery root vegetables become mildly-flavored tender bites of yum when cooked. You can roast radishes like other root veggies or you can saute them until they soften and brown. Even the most radical radish eschewers grow fond of the sometimes fiery root when cooked. This recipe also includes the radish greens, which are packed with health-benefiting nutrients and flavor.
The success in this dish lies in buying or picking the freshest radishes.
4 bunches of radishes, washed well, patted dry
1 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh tarragon
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Trim greens from the radishes and coarsely chop the greens. Set aside. Quarter the radishes.
2. Heat butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When butter has melted, swirl skillet, and add radishes. Cook, stirring often, until they are tender and lightly browned. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.
3. Add remaining tablespoon of olive oil and heat. Stir in orange zest and garlic, cooking for 1 minute. Add radish greens and cook, stirring often, until wilted.
4. Stir in tarragon and cook 1 more minute. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Add radishes back to skillet, tossing to combine. Serve warm.