Hello again, friends. Now that you have all stared at (and hopefully made) the avocado taco recipe for an exceptionally long time, I figured I needed to clean up my act and offer you something new. Sorry for my absence here. I wondered if I could just fade away, but enough of you (graciously) pestered me that I am back to post again at the hope that you might like it. And the hope that I can get out some recipe congestion and share somethings I have surprised myself with lately, and liked.
This recipe is an example of that. I didn’t like radishes. Every time I tried to buy them because I thought I should like them they were attack-style peppery; these were aggressive, angry vegetables. I realized that I like them best pickled on Vietnamese sandwiches and that was it. So I stopped bothering to cook with them at home. Despite signing off from housing the angry vegetables in my fridge, a few stealthy sneaked in the door in my vegetable co-op box a few weeks back. I snarled my luck, but seeing the homeless, helpless pearly white orbs, I couldn’t bear to throw such attractive radishes out. So in the produce drawer they went. Days went by and I realized I had to do something with them or they would languish and I would be guilty of waste, so I scoured my cookbook library for some inspiring application for bushy topped fall radishes. A few book swore radishes and butter were a perfect pairing. But when I had tried something similar with sliced radishes on buttered bread before they were too peppery whenever I got an unbuttered bite. But it was a good pairing. The solution seemed crazy simple when I found a recipe that called for pulsing the radishes with the butter- so every bite was buttered and balanced. Genius, but would my radishes be tame enough or would they be still be too peppery for my liking? Would a bit of butter be enough to balance the bite?
I read on. Apparently I had been going about radish eating all wrong. Radishes don’t like the heat- they get all fired up in the summer months, turning increasingly peppery and overly piquant with the rising in temperatures. Radishes are much, much calmer in cooler temperatures. I smiled. It is fall, the weather outside is crisp, and cool outside; these radishes were not going to bite back. I was ready to try again. I pulsed together some radishes, good butter, sea salt, and lemon zest, and spread the creamy crisp fluff on a slice of toast with a shred of the greens, and bravely took a tentative bite. And then another. And about seventeen more.
Then I convinced the preschooler to try it. It was safe and passed as a fancy tea party sandwich. She bit, and bit again. We were both won over by those sneaky, tasty radishes. So much so, that the next morning as I packed her lunch the next day for preschool she asked if she could have the end of the radish butter made into a fancy tea party sandwich, perhaps? I conceded what would have been my lunch, and then smeared the remaining tablespoon of savory spread on to my toast. Radishes for the win.
I’m thinking this would be just the thing to serve as part of a crudites platter or easily pack able for your own lunch or maybe fancy tea party in need of sandwiches.
1 bunch of radishes, washed and beheaded of their tops
4 oz. best quality butter, softened
sea salt to taste (more if your butter is unsalted, less if not)
freshly ground pepper
radish tops, thinly sliced into ribbons
Pulse the radishes in a food processor (or shred with a grater). Add butter and zest of one lemon and pulse (or stir into shredded radishes). Add salt to taste. Serve atop bread (toasted or not) or as a dip or in endive leaves with ribbons of leaves on top.