With the abundance of fresh local spring radishes picked at their height of freshness and flavor, I’ve been trying to think of other ways to use then rather than just have them play second fiddle as a mere garnish in a green salad. Why? Because I love these little root vegetables. Fresh and crunchy, they are a real treat. Especially in this spring salad where tasty sweet citrus and honey offset radishes cooling heat.
Beyond the satisfying crunch they provide, radishes have a high water content making them extremely refreshing as well as nutritious. But just in case you’re not convinced here are a few more reasons to “eat your radishes!”
1 SOOTH SORE THROATS
Their natural spiciness is an anti congestive and can help eliminate excess mucus in the body , which is especially helpful when you are fighting a cold. Plus they can help clear the sinuses and relieve soothe sore throats.
2 AID DIGESTION
Rich in fiber, radishes are a soothing natural cleansing agent for the digestive system. They help break down and eliminate toxins built up over time and help relieve bloating and indigestion.
3 HIGH IN VITAMIN C
Just a 1/2-cup serving contains 14 percent of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C! Because of their high vitamin C content (along with many other important vitamins and minerals), regular consumption can help prevent viral infections, plus it works in the body to rebuild tissues, blood vessels and maintain healthy skin, bones and teeth.
4 ARE A DIETERS FRIEND
Radishes are low in calories and high in nutrients. A 1/2-cup serving of radish slices contains only 9 calories and 2 grams of carbs, meaning they are a great way to add nutrients, fiber and lots of flavor to your meals. Their high fiber and water content also make them filling, thus satisfying hunger.
5 KEEPS YOU HYDRATED
With their high water content (95%) radishes help keep the body cool and hydrated, which not only is that good for your tissues and digestive tract, but it also results in radiant and fresh looking, well-hydrated skin. Plus lots of vitamin C as well as phosphorus and zinc, radishes are a nourishing food for the tissues and can help keep your body hydrated and your skin looking fresh and healthy all summer long!
For this recipe I used French Breakfast radishes, which are a little milder than the common supermarket variety –Cherry Belle radishes are the bright red-skinned round “table radishes” and French Breakfast radishes are the elongated red-skinned radishes with a white splash at the root end.
Spring Radish Salad with Mint, Orange & Pine Nuts
Serves 4, as a small side
1 bunch radishes (use the variety you like best), trimmed and finely chopped
2 small sweet oranges, sectioned and diced
1/2 a small red onion, minced
1 tablespoon mint, finely chopped (I think fresh tarragon would work well too)
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons good-quality white wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon honey
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
handful toasted pine nuts
1. In a medium-sized serving bowl, mix together the radishes, orange, red onion and mint.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and honey until combined. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat the salad ingredients.
3. Garnish with toasted pine nuts and serve.