It’s the time of year that us growers get excited about radish. They are a beautiful, fresh crop at time when last season’s veg is running low and this season’s is not yet ready. They are a stunning veg that give us a taste of what’s to come.
It’s not just growers who are excited about veg, our local chefs are keen to use them too. And if you have half an eye on your health they are a veg to pack in.
A familiar but often overlooked vegetable, Radish (Raphanus sativus) has lots of little known benefits and brings pizzazz to any dish. In the body radishes are an excellent purifier, they detox the blood, support the functioning of your liver and aid digestion. Not only that but those little balls are full of fibre and water, so help keep you hydrated and act as important roughage. On top of that they are packed with vitamin C and minerals such as calcium and potassium. Get the kids hooked on them!
So here are 4 ways you can try radish this spring:
This is how most of us are used to radish, sliced in a salad. But you could try using them in your own home made coleslaw, they bring a new layer of flavour. Or try them with a honey and mustard dressing, or in a wrap. Another delicious salad option for radish is using the French Breakfast variety as a dipping stick with hummus. Just cut these long, cylindrical radishes into quarters lengthways and scoop up the hummus. Look out for our broad bean hummus recipe coming soon. Also don’t forget you can eat the radish leaves. We leave them on in our lovely bunches so you can chop them into salads.
At the Real Food Garden we love pickles, they are a diverse delight easily and quickly made. We slice up the radishes, add a little sliced onion or shallot and a clove of garlic, all mixed in a bowl. Then flavour with your choice of pickling spices. Because Amelia is a keen maker of infused cider vinegars we have a good selection of vinegars which do a lot of the flavouring for us. We chose lemon cider vinegar for this pickle and just added a little honey, chilli and salt and pepper. Mmm delicious, so zingy with an after kapow of warming radish.
We got this one from Anna Jones who mellows the punch of the radish with the honey. This is great if you want roasted veg without the wait. Just chop the radish in half or quarter, mix with olive oil, a couple of teaspoons of honey, a dash of lemon juice and some Cornish Sea Salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes, meanwhile roughly chopping the leaves to be mixed with the radish before serving to bring a lovely contrasting colour to the cerise of the radish. Anna loves this with a summer tart, we love it with our spinach and tomato quiche, home grown, sumptuouseating at its best.
If you are into your spiraliser try making noodles from the French Breakfast variety to go with any stir fry dish. It’s a little fiddly to do but the short noodles are great for those of us not adept at using chopsticks! The brassica taste really complements Asian cooking and soaks up the flavours whilst retaining its own distinctly peppery notes. Don’t cook for long, crunchy is good here.
So go on, give radish a try this spring! You can pop into the farm to pick up a bunch or find us at Roche school on a Monday and St Wenn school on a Friday.