Radishes tend to cause some controversy. Though they are one of our top sellers at market, a lot of people are often at a loss when it comes to figuring out what to do with them. The radish is rarely employed as a cooked ingredient, we often see it sitting forgotten and drying out at the far edges of salad bars, or dubiously included as a condiment on a taco plate, seemingly as an afterthought. However, they are a useful and delicious ingredient to have at your disposal in the kitchen. They can be prepared hot or cold, and the varieties we offer throughout the year comprise an entire spectrum of tastes and appearances. To give you a better sense of the varieties we offer, here is a lineup of the usual suspects complete with how best to prepare and serve them.
This is the poster-child radish, a bright red orb that lends itself to salads and crudités, but also has a wonderful flavor when roasted. This is a mild radish, slightly sweet and perfect when sliced thin and served on whole wheat bread with dill and mayo. We also recommend adding it to other root vegetable mashes and gratins, it will certainly take potatoes to the next level.
Very similar in mildness to the rudolf, but appears in a variety of colors that range from white, to pink, to deep purple. You eat with your eyes first, so use the different shades to your advantage when composing salads or making pickles. We’ve made a vibrant kimchi by using this multi-colored variety.
Speaking of kimchi, this is our favorite when it comes to Asian-inspired dishes. The long, narrow shape lends itself well to slicing into thin strips, or into many even-sized discs when adding to different ferments. If you’re afraid of fermentation or don’t have much experience, try doing a simple marinade of rice vinegar, salt, and sugar combined with thinly sliced daikon, carrot, and chopped cilantro to make an awesome condiment for sandwiches or fish tacos.
This might be the most beautiful and surprising radish when cut open. A whitish-green exterior gives way to bright pink flesh that resembles the complexion of a ripe watermelon. They aren’t as saccharine as their cucurbit doppelganger of course, but are sweet nonetheless. When roasted with olive oil, lemon, and salt, their color and sweetness are nicely highlighted, and they might make a medley of roasted root vegetables seem a little less earth-toned and drab.
The ultimate flavor-burst as far as spiciness is concerned, a real sinus-clearer. When sliced, its thin black skin gives way to a white flesh that will please the palates of those looking for an added punch to their salads, pickles, and sandwiches. We like these a lot, especially raw.
A unique radish, in that its tops are especially good when served raw. Though we all love eating our radish greens, many of them can be bristly, and therefore need to be braised. When chopped up, the root makes a delightful raw salsa when combined with onion, garlic, lime juice, salt, pepper, and cilantro.
These pink and white beauties are traditionally served with cold butter and salt. It might sounds strange, but it’s really, really good. Because, you know, butter.
Don’t throw away the greens! Radish greens are lovely and we highly recommend trying them out by cooking them alone, or as an addition to your favorite braising greens (e.g., spinach, kale, collards, mustards, etc). Our standard braised green recipe always starts by first sauteeing onions and garlic in oil (vegetable, olive, or animal fat). We then add the stems, which have been separated from the leaves and chopped thinly. Finally, when everything is tender and smelling good, we add the greens which have been roughly chopped, and finished with salt, cider vinegar and a little Texas Pete.