I don't get around to cooking with and eating radishes as often as I would like to, and it's not because I don't love them. I do adore their spicy, pungent, pleasant bitterness. That crisp bite. And best of all, that jewel-like beauty. Radishes have got to be one of the prettiest vegetables on the market and they look appetizing and gorgeous on a plate.
But I mostly like my vegetables cooked, and radishes appear to lend themselves better to uncooked foods, like salads.
Another reason, perhaps, is that I came to the small, round, deep-pink variety later in life. In India, the only radish I knew growing up was the daikon -- that long, white, rather intimidating-looking root -- which is chopped up with the greens and sauteed for a very tasty sabzi or side. You can also roll it out within the folds of a mooli paratha, or toss it into a dal or a sambar, and it's divine. (I've added the little radishes to sambar too, and they work just as well.)
Recently, I came across a radish recipe from David Tanis who writes evocative, unusual vegetable recipes like Eggplant Soup and Roasted Coconut Carrots in his New York Times column. The radish recipe called for a hefty amount of butter, but I did love the idea of transforming that lovely, crisp bite of the radish into butter-softness.
So at the market, I picked up some radishes. Jay, who had never eaten them before, asked if they were a fruit and wanted to eat them rightaway. When I told him they were a vegetable, his ardor cooled down (only slightly -- he does love some vegetables and will eat most), but I knew the recipe I had in mind would win him back.
I also wanted to try out some lavender, and this seemed like the perfect recipe for it. I have somehow never thought of lavender as an edible herb although it very much is one, and I bought a potted lavender this year with the full intention of attempting to eat it.
I loved the way this recipe turned out. Instead of butter, I braised the radishes with a flavorsome vegetable stock, salt, pepper, and shallots. And in the end I added a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil for some fresh, green flavor. The radishes were excellent: once braised, they turn a pretty, paler pink, and the texture is truly butter-soft. Their earthy, slightly bitter taste is complemented nicely by the fresh, fragrant lavender.
This would be a wonderful side to serve with some this vegan shepherd's pie, or this vegan asparagus potato tart. Or you could just smush them over some buttered toast, take a hungry bite, and, for a moment, feel completely at peace with the world.
More vegetable sides you might like
- Vegan Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad
- Curry Roasted Eggplant
- Vegan Collard Greens
- Curried Carrot Salad
- Vegan Garlic Butter Mushrooms
Braised Radishes with Lavender
- 1 pound radishes ends trimmed and halved or quartered (depending on how large or small your radishes are)
- 2 shallots minced
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 teaspoon lavender minced
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil
- Mix all the ingredients except the lavender and olive oil in a cast-iron or other saucepan.
- Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low, cover the pan, and let the radishes cook about 15 minutes or until a knife pierced through goes cleanly through.
- If there is any liquid remaining, take off the lid and let it evaporate.
- Check salt and pepper and add more if needed. Drizzle on the lavender and the olive oil.
Should the radishes be completely submerged while cooking? Also you are talented and amazing, thank you.
Thanks, Darby! 🙂 It will depend on the size of your pan but if they are not immersed, turn them over occasionally during cooking so they cook evenly!
Great recepie! Thanks! Are you using now both flowers n leaves of lavender? Do you add it in when all the cooking is over or do you let it cook all together for a little while? Thanks
I meant linguine no cook tomato sauce!
Hello Vaishali, Trust you are doing great! Thanks for providing details about the pressure cooker.
Just wanted to say, I tried your recipe "linguine no cooked tomato sauce" as I had little to no time to cook dinner last night after a long day at work.
Recipe turned out yummy!
Thanks for sharing!
A bg hug.
Hi Sheela, so glad you liked the linguini recipe. Thanks for letting me know, and hugs back to you.
Intrigued---only have dried lavender...think it would work?
Hi Ellen, add dried lavender, no more than a quarter tsp, at the beginning cheers.
Yum...I have never thought of cooking the small radishes. Bookmarked to try.Also wanted to let you know I am not getting the latest recipes in my blog reader(now stagnant at the squash cake recipe)
Hi Ambica, hmm, I wonder what's going on. Thanks for letting me know. Let me try and figure this out.