Radish is a very easy to grow crop. I find it most useful as a marker crop for slow growing plants like leek or parsnip.
Quite often radish is thrown into a salad almost as an afterthought. This simple recipe shows off the radishes finer qualities, and that peppery flavour is an ideal accompaniment to beef steak.
Essentially it is a carpaccio of radish
Carpaccio traditionally is meat or fish sliced very thinly and sometimes pounded, but I like to use the term for veg served like this. For the very daring, the beef could also be served raw, very thinly sliced and with a mustard dressing - but I just fancied a warmed salad.
To add to that I use an anchovy and Parmesan based dressing to add a salty tang to the meal.
The recipe itself was influenced by a kohlrabi recipe by Hugh Fernley Whittingstall.
My radish were quite small, but my mate Damiens were huge, about the size of a small carrot.
I have two types of radish at the moment, a red French Breakfast 3 type that is available in nearly all seed outlets, and a yellow french type called Jaune d'Or Ovale.
Many people don't like large radish, or find them too hot. For this recipe I like that peppery kick, and the large size makes for better presentation.
For 4 people you will need about 4 large or, of the more usual size that you get in the shops, about 16.
Enough radishes for people to be fed - 1 large of 4 small per person
50 grammes Parmesan cheese, grated
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons of Donegal Rapeseed oil.
Tablespoon chopped chives
1 clove garlic, finely minced
4-6 sustainable anchovy fillets, cut into small pieces
For the Anchovy HFW recommends fish-4-ever.com
Small steak, 1 for every two people
Onion stem cuttings, sliced
tomato - 1 per person, cut in half
French bread stick or turkish flat white bread, sliced
Mustard, whole grain
Wash the radish. Using a veg peeler, slice into thin slivers as long as possible into a bowl.
Make a dressing using the garlic, oil, lemon juice, anchovy and grated Parmesan.
Pour the dressing over the radish and mix well.
Plate up and sprinkle over some chopped chives and a few shavings of Parmesan.
This was simply cut into strips, places on a slice of crusty white bread with a little mayonnaise and wholegrain mustard and plated with the salad. It is a good way to stretch steak, and I do think we Irish tend to overdo red meat consumption.
With that you have the onion and salt tang, the rich chewy beef, sweet warm tomato and the peppery radish kick.