Usually when you buy radishes from the supermarket—and even from the farmer’s market—the leaves are almost always wilted and sorry looking—good only for compost or the trash bin. Yesterday, a new farmer had shown up at my local market and he had really fresh radishes.
These radish leave were fresh enough that I knew I could not just throw them away. A quick look at the internet suggested that they were not only edible, but that you could treat them just like any other hearty green. There is one exception: Do not eat them raw, because they have spiky hairs that will poke your mouth, if they are not softened by heat.
After Dinner Note: So much for frugality—this was not a popular dish. Chris thought the greens belonged in the trash. Jan wanted her radishes raw. Truth be told I though the greens were very strong flavored and fairly tough my own self. Miriam suggested a warm salad of the sautéed greens added to the raw radishes might be a better way of making this dish.
Karl’s Sautéed Red Radishes and Greens
3 cups radish leaves
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 cup red radishes, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbs. lemon juice (or sherry vinegar)
¼ tsp. black pepper, cracked
¼ tsp. Kosher salt
1. Sort and rinse the leaves.
Tip: Even in the best bunches of radishes some of the leaves will have started to turn yellow or black. Use only the best leaves and discard/compost the rest.
2. Add the oil to a pan, over medium high heat, and sauté the sliced radishes for two minutes, until translucent.
3. Add the drained leaves to the pan and continue sautéing until most of the leaves have wilted, about another two minutes.
Tip: If necessary spoon of any excess liquid.
4. Pull the vegetables to the sides of the pan and add the garlic to the hole in the center.
5. Sauté the garlic until fragrant, about one minute.
6. Stir the garlic into the vegetables and add the lemon juice, pepper, and salt.
Note: I had originally planned to use sherry vinegar, but I had used half a lemon for my BBQed corn and the other half was just sitting there, begging to go into this dish.
7. Cook for one minute more, tossing to coat the vegetables with the lemon juice.
8. Transfer the vegetables to a serving dish and present warm.