While the late spring snow and icy rain fell outside, and then the dry winds blew across Synderville basin, the radish seeds I planted in March sprouted and grew inside my small greenhouse. I have two beautiful containers full of radishes & their greens - Easter Eggs radishes and French Breakfast radishes.
Now it is time to play in the kitchen. First a bit of breakfast. The herbs in the greenhouse are also coming in, so I harvested a bit of Lemon Thyme, Lime Basil and Parsley to make an herbed ricotta. I toasted a diagonal slice of a Red Bicycle baguette and spread the herbed ricotta, topped it with a few slices of avocado and slices of the first purple Easter Egg radishes.
Radish greens are frequently fed to the chickens. In a grocery store, radish greens are typically so gritty and wilted, you would not think they were edible. However, one of the best things about growing your own is the lush beautiful greens that are not only edible but delicious. Radish greens are bit prickly when harvested, but when cooked or pureed with oil, that disappears.
I wanted to make a dinner with the radish greens. I began by shopping in my pantry and refrigerator. I found a bit of leftover orecchiette, 2 pieces of bacon, a Fresno chili, and (since I raise chickens) a dozen eggs. One of my favorite Italian dishes is Orecchiette with Broccoli and Sausage. I decided to improvise on this with my radish greens and the ingredients I found in the kitchen. While the orecchiette cooked, I washed and removed the stems from the radish greens, and cut them in ribbons. I sautéed the bacon, knowing the fat would be able to calm any overly spicy greens. When the bacon was crisp, I drained off some of the fat, then added an onion and minced Fresno chili, sautéing until softened. Next came the radish ribbons. The pasta was ready, so I drained it with a spider and added it to the pan with a bit of the pasta water to help mix everything together. Larry, my husband and egg cook extraordinaire, fried eggs to go on top, along with sliced radishes in different colors.
This is just the beginning of the radish fun. I definitely have enough greens for a radish green pesto and possibly a soup. With the radishes themselves will come a variety of salads and appetizers. I still need to harvest the French Breakfast radishes!