Thursday, April 22, 2010
1 Recipe #99: Sautéed Daikon Radish on a Bed of Wilted Greens
Cooked radishes have a totally different flavor & consistency when they're cooked. Gone is the sharp, bitey flavor, which has been replaced by a surprisingly mellow one. The daikon radish in particular, tastes really wonderful when complimented by other greens and, believe it or not, milk-based products, because they provide the perfect gentle foundation and also tremendously enhance the dish's overall flavor.
Did you know that, just like beet greens, daikon radish greens are also edible?! The daikon radish greens themselves have a peppery flavor that's similar to arugula, but after they've been cooked, they taste a lot like spinach. :)
This works out quite well; because not only can use find creative uses for the greens, but it also means less kitchen waste. As I've mentioned before, I try to use as many parts of a vegetable (or fruit!) as humanly possible, if I can at all avoid it. My attitude is similar to historic Native American attitudes towards the buffalo; they found a use for every part, and let nothing go to waste.
Anyhow, hope you will enjoy this unique spin on the daikon radish & its greens.
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. garlic, peeled & finely minced (about 3 large garlic cloves)
1 Tbsp. shallot, peeled & finely minced (about 1 large shallot)
1 c. daikon radish, peeled & sliced crosswise into paper-thin rounds (about 1 large radish)
2 c. daikon greens, finely chopped crosswise into narrow strips
1/4 c. fresh sorrel, finely minced
2 Tbsp. fresh basil, finely chopped crosswise into narrow strips
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme (about 10 sprigs)
1 c. water
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 Tbsp. butter
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp. low-fat sour cream
Parmesan cheese, grated (for garnish)
Directions: Saute garlic & shallot in olive oil on low heat, & cook until tender (about 30 seconds). Add all other ingredients, except the sour cream & Parmesan cheese, and cook until liquid has almost completely evaporated. Be sure to cook the ingredients on low-heat, as you want to blanch the greens, so that they retain their bright green color. Taste-test a radish (allow it to cool first so you don't burn your mouth!); it should be pliable but still retain a bit of its crunch. When ready, remove from heat. Allow to cool a bit, mix in sour cream, stir thoroughly, garnish with Parmesan cheese, & serve.
Chef's Notes: Use a vegetable peeler to slice the radishes paper-thin; this is the best way to achieve this effect. It's important that the radishes are very thin, because they need to cook at the same rate as the greens. Also, the texture is really nice. :)
To make this recipe vegan, eliminate sour cream, substitute vegan imitation "cheese" (i.e., like "soy cheese & the like) for Parmesan, & replace 1 Tbsp. butter with 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, or simply omit butter all together.
Yield: 2 servings.