Radishes

I have had an interesting relationship with radishes. It’s not really a love/hate relationship, as I’ve disliked them since childhood. My gardener grandfather, Pop, tried unsuccessfully every spring to get me to eat one of these cruciferous veggies. It became a long running joke between us.

“Have a radish?” he would say with a grin, offering me one.

No thank you!” I would firmly reply.

It wasn’t that I was a picky eater, either. I liked most foods. I wanted to like radishes. Every once in a while, I would nibble on one, hoping it tasted differently than the last one I tried, to no avail.

Radishes

I completely abandoned any attempt to like radishes by adulthood. If they showed up in a salad, I picked them out, telling myself that I didn’t like radishes.

When I received Life Changing Foods, by Anthony William, I discovered he had devoted a section to radishes. I read through the info.

Radishes support and replenish the immune system. The sulfur in this veggie repels any type of pathogen and kills off parasites. The sulfides keep arteries and veins clean, which prevents plaque from building up. Radishes are incredible heart food, preventing cardiovascular disease and issues by increasing good cholesterol and lowering bad cholesterol. And the skin of this little root vegetable helps to prevent all types of cancers. They also restore the kidney, liver, pancreas and spleen.

With radishes, we get a two-for-one deal. Not only are the roots health boosting, the greens are one of the most prebiotic foods available, second only to wild blueberries. Radish leaves contain nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytochemicals and cancer fighting alkaloids, plus the greens possess antibacterial and antiviral properties. They repair the colon and parts of the intestinal tract that have lost the ability to absorb nutrients. Radish greens cleanse heavy metals from the body, removing mercury, lead, arsenic and aluminum. They also stave off neurological conditions, including MS, ALS, Parkinson’s and Lyme disease.

After reading about the extraordinary benefits radishes offer, I knew I needed to rethink my attitude about this powerful food. I’ve already discovered that my taste buds have changed since going plant based. Several other foods that I once disliked, I now enjoy.

I gave radishes another try. Pop would be proud of me. I can’t say radishes are my favorite food, however, I like them, especially combined with other foods in salads and slaws. In fact, this week I created a radish/red cabbage/carrot slaw with a zesty jalapeño dressing that I do love. See the recipe HERE.

I intend to incorporate radish greens in salads or add them to veggies to steam. And next spring, I want to grow them in my veggie bed. I can imagine my grandfather’s face brightening as he grins. “Have a radish?” At last I can answer, “Yes!”

Radishes

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Radish Slaw with Jalapeño Dressing

This colorful slaw was inspired by a sample that I tasted at a local indie theater that specializes in vegan food. It contained the tasty combo of shredded cabbage and radishes, with the spicy tang of a jalapeño dressing.

I attempted a similar slaw of my own this evening, created without a recipe, combining red cabbage, radishes and carrots, and mixed with my version of a jalapeño dressing.

Radish Slaw with Jalapeño Dressing

Here’s my “this and that” recipe:

Radish Slaw with Jalapeño Dressing

1 cup red cabbage, shredded

1 cup carrots, shredded

4 – 6 radishes, cut into thin slivers

Jalapeño Dressing

1/2 cup cashews, soaked in water

2 limes, juiced

1 cup cilantro

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 jalapeño, seeded

4 tablespoons water

Sea salt & pepper to taste

Combine shredded red cabbage, carrots and radish slivers in a medium sized bowl.

Drain cashews. Combine cashews, lime juice, cilantro, garlic, jalapeño and water in a blender and blend until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour over slaw and mix well. Refrigerate. Makes 4 servings.

Radish Slaw with Jalapeño Dressing

This slaw came together in minutes. The dressing is delicious without being too spicy, although I was more aware of the slight heat from the jalapeño after I finished the slaw. I suspect the slaw I sampled at the theater had an oil and vinegar base. This version has neither, nor does it contain sugar.

I tried my radish slaw and I loved it. This is a big deal to me, as I used to dislike radishes. They seemed too peppery and pithy to me. My grandfather, whom we affectionately called Pop, grew radishes every year in his huge garden. And every year he would offer me one of those little round red vegetables and say “Have a radish!” I always declined.

I’ve learned recently that radishes are so beneficial. Watch for a blog post about radishes and their health benefits this Friday. Pop…I’m eating radishes now, and enjoying them. You would be so happy about that!

Radish Slaw with Jalapeño Dressing