"Eating pungent radish and drinking hot tea, let the starved doctors beg on their knees," so goes a popular Chinese proverb. I was reminded of this proverb when I learned these pungent plucky pups of the earth were scheduled to arrive in my eroots produce box last week. While there are recipes aplenty to be found with a simple Google search I didn't bother. For where I come from, radishes are most tasty served simply with a side car of cold beer.
Breaking Wind? Clearing wind?
Be forewarned: burping shall commence shortly after consumption of a radish, or two or three or more. Radishes top the list when it comes to foods which cause burping or other gusts emanating from the body. But pungent foods, like radishes, are also said to clear Wind from the body which, per traditional Asian medicine practices, is exactly what you want to be doing come Spring.
Ice Ice Radish
I'd seen my share of radishes (and side cars of cold beer) but the ones which arrived in the produce box threw me for a loop. They were Icicle radishes from South Central Farms. Icicle radishes are known to herald in spring, the vegetable version of the crocus which sprouts from the earth giving us the sign that spring is near. The medicinal qualities of the radish is not really news for those "in the know," for according to Specialty Produce: “[I]cicle type radishes are believed to have first been grown in physic gardens in the 1600’s.” Modern day medicinal uses of the radish include everything from detox, liver cleansing, disinfectant, diuretic, and more.
Slice Me, Dice Me
By the time I had deconstructed the contents of the produce box and stored away the fruits and veggies all that was left on the counter were the radishes. Snack time!
I sliced them.
Pulled out rice wine vinegar, kosher salt (not pictured), and caraway seeds. I sprinkled a little of each atop the radish.
The caraway seeds was an inspiration from my South African friend Zara, a true chef in her own right. She also recommended a pickling of the radish. As often is the case, I had no patience for such things like pickling. The radish was consumed on the spot in lieu of a proper dinner. Was it a snack? A salad? Or simply sustenance at the end of a long day? It was hard to say and too much to analyze. So I poured a cold one and munched away on my radishes. So goes a Thursday night around my house.