Saturday, May 22, 2010

Radish stirfry? An unusual recipe to share

Indiana this week got rain. A lot of rain.

As a result, when I finally stumbled into our garden Friday night, I was greeted with serious changes. My peas must have grown several inches. My garlic now dwarfs my toddler. And radishes were everywhere.

I picked an entire basket of radishes, which sat on my counter, muddy and ignored, until morning. And while our family enjoys the sauteed radishes, it's time to expand our repertoire.

So I did a search for radish recipes. And stumbled on to a very unusual idea: Using the tops for your dinner. Recipes exist for everything from soups to stirfries using the leafs rather than the roots of radishes. Who knew?

So instead of getting one dish out of the radishes, I'll get two. A good thing because, as I found with this dish, radish tops look far too close to lettuce for my little guy.

I settled on a stirfry of the radish leaves, similar to stir-frying bok choy. (The original recipe for Spicy Stir-Fried Radish Greens and/or Swiss Chard appears here.)

After thoroughly washing the leaves (the most time-consuming part of this process), I roughly ripped appart the leaves, removing the stems.

I heated my wok with about 1/2 tablespoon of peanut oil and added the radish greens and 1 tsp. minced garlic.

As I was tossing the leaves, I mixed on the side 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon honey and a splash of hot sauce. (Keep in mind two of us like things mild.) As the leaves wilted, I added the sauce, tossed quickly, and served.

The verdict? Mixed. I thought it was fine, with a little extra salt. My husband looked at me with one eye raised and turned to the kitchen to make some very bland rice. (To his defense, he did try it, and noted it had a slightly citrusy taste.) And the 4 year old? She settled in with a bowl of it, eating every last bite.


Rebecca The Greeniac said...

Now that's creativity in the kitchen! But was there any thing else in the stirfry... or just radish leaves?

At our house it's spinach... several times a day, in every conceivable dish that you could put spinach in. I admit it's wearing thin, but mother nature has stepped up to help us out with a few days of really hot weather, so it's all bolted now. It makes me sad, but it opens up garden space for the warm weather stuff.

Really enjoying your blog... I just stumbled upon it.

Yours in Frugal Green-ness,
Rebecca The Greeniac

Robbie said...

Rebecca, thanks for stopping by! It was really just the greens but I can see it easily being used in a low mein or other stirfry where greens were used. I don't have too much experience in the cooked greens category, so this is all new to our family. I don't know that I'd eat it on its own, but I can see it in a dish.

Also, something to consider, particularly if you're thinking going raw - the larger radishes had leaves with a much rougher texture than the smaller ones.


Janel said...

What's your recipe for sauteed radishes? I'd like to try it.

Robbie said...

Hi Janel, it's really simple. Slice and saute' in butter! Not the most healthy way to enjoy it, but it works, and the whole family enjoys it.

I learned about it from a farmers market vendor a year or two back, and it's stuck!