Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Roasted Spring Radishes with Sauteed Radish Greens

Roasted Radishes with pecan-crusted tilapia
This simple way to prepare radishes will delight anyone who enjoys this zesty late-winter/early-spring vegetable, and convert radish-haters into lovers. Roasting brings out the natural sweetness in radishes and other root vegetables, while toning down and virtually eliminating their notorious sharpness or "bite."

As with any roots, the younger and smaller radishes will be milder in flavor. Likewise, it's important to select radishes that are a fresh as possible. One very good reason to buy them with their green tops is that the tops provide tell-tale signs of age: Perky, deep-green leaves with little or no blemishing or wilting indicate a fresh bunch, while radishes with yellowed, limp or very large dull-looking leaves are past their prime.

Another good reason to buy radishes with their tops is that the greens are tasty and nutritious, more tender than collard or turnip greens and surprisingly light in flavor when sauteed in a little oil or butter. The sauteed radish greens serve as a base for the roasted radish roots in this side dish.

Finally, there are no quantities listed in this recipe. Use as much or as little oil as it takes to coat the radish bottoms lightly and as little as possible to saute the greens. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. Because of the very short list of ingredients, for best flavor use a good-quality sea salt and freshly-cracked or ground black pepper if possible. And if you happen to have a Meyer lemon, by all means use it here!

"Easter Egg" radishes
1 bunch radishes with green tops attached
Olive Oil
Sea Salt
Cracked or coarsely ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400°F. Thoroughly wash the beets and tops under running water, shake off excess water, pinch off the green tops and set aside. Trim the ends off the radishes and cut in half or into quarters, depending on the size of the radish. Toss with just enough olive oil to coat lightly, season with salt and pepper to taste, then spread in a single layer in a shallow roasting pan or on a baking sheet. Roast at 400°F until tender and lightly golden, about 45 minutes, stirring once or twice to ensure even cooking.

During the last 15 minutes or so of the roasting time, add a little olive oil to a skillet and heat over medium heat. Coarsely chop or tear the radish greens (I include the stems but you can discard if you prefer) and saute in the hot oil until tender and wilted -- this can take 10 minutes or more, and they should appear very dark green in color. Season to taste with salt & pepper and one or more squeezes of lemon juice.

To serve, create a "bed" with the sauteed greens, then spoon some roasted radishes on top. If desired, you can season with additional salt & pepper, or another squeeze of lemon juice, or even a little drizzled extra virgin olive oil.

Zestfully yours,
Carolina Sauce Company

PS: For more family-pleasing, wholesome vegetable recipes ranging from easy to make to involved but worth it, be sure to follow our Vegetarian Recipes board on Pinterest!


  1. Christine Laudonio-WendellMarch 20, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    I love radishes raw! I just recently sauteed them in a bit of olive oil with S&P and I was truly amazed at the depth of flavor! The "bite" of the radish was gone, yet the crispy, crunchy texture and peppery taste remained! Love them cooked now too! I just picked up radishes at the local farmers market and I will roast them for a nice change with a bit of meyer lemon I have!

    1. Hi Christine,
      Thanks for your comment, & nice to see you here! I love raw radishes, too, and have never tried sauteing them - that sounds delicious! Will definitely give that a try, and thanks for sharing that tip. I bet sauteed radishes would be nice as an accompaniment to some poached or over-easy brunch eggs, as well as with dinner entrees of course. Cannot wait until we get some spring radishes & other farm-fresh vegs from the CSA we joined - first delivery in 3 weeks, i think!
      Zestfully yours,