Radish Roots and Greens Mellow When Cooked

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Originally published in The Watauga Democrat and written by Margie Mansure

Radishes have a pungent, peppery flavor that’s from compounds also present in mustard and horseradish. They’re often used to add a little spice to salads or stir-fries or garnish Mexican Cuisine.

Even though radish greens are quite mild, most people discard them. Such a waste, as the greens are a rich source of vitamins C and K and a good source of potassium. As a cruciferous vegetable, radishes are full of antioxidants that alter how cancer cells reproduce and likely reduce cancer risk.

People who don’t like radishes raw often like them cooked as the pungent flavor mellows. Roasting also adds sweetness through caramelization.

Roasted Radishes

  • Around 1 pound of radishes, halved
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon dried dill (or 1 tablespoon fresh)
  • Lemon zest from one lemon

Preheat oven to 425°. Combine the radishes with other ingredients to evenly coat. If you are using fresh dill, toss in with lemon zest once cooked. Spread over a sheet pan or large baking dish and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes. Once cooked to desired doneness, toss with zested lemon.

Makes 4 servings

This recipe includes mild-tasting, nutritious greens.

Lemony Balsamic Radish Roots and Greens

Sauce ingredients:

  • 1½ teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper

Mix ingredients in small bowl and set aside.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • approx. 14 ounces of radishes (or 2 bunches) with greens
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 – 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons green olives with pimentos, chopped

Wash radishes and greens well to remove grit. Dry greens and coarsely chop. Slice radishes.

Place 12-inch skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Add olive oil, and once hot add radishes and ¼ teaspoon salt. Stir occasionally until lightly browned. Add greens, cooking for a few minutes until tender. Add green onions and olives, then stir in reserved lemon vinegar sauce. Heat through and serve.

Makes 4 servings

Margie Mansure is an extension agent with N.C. Cooperative Extension. As a registered dietitian/nutritionist chef, she offers nutrition and cooking classes to community members. margie_mansure@ncsu.edu