Do you feel "radish greens remorse" when you toss out radish tops? Good news: It doesn't have to be this way!
The green leafy tops of radishes (and many other vegetables such as turnips or beets) are perfectly edible and are, in fact, delicious. You can use them as you would other green leafy vegetables — though radish greens, in particular, can be a little fuzzy and benefit from a bit of chopping, blending, sautéing, the addition of an acid or turning into a green sauce!
There are a lot of different words for green sauces — chimichurri, salsa verde, gremolata and chermoula — and I deliberated over what to call this green sauce made with radish tops. After consideration, I settled on chimichurri, as it has a similar combination of ingredients as the traditional South American condiment, only with radish tops in place of parsley and oregano.
I've made it with radish greens, but you can substitute pretty much any edible green that would otherwise be discarded. It can be adapted in numerous other ways, as well: try adding cilantro or tarragon for more bright herbaceous notes or increase the amount of garlic if that's your jam. The sauce works great on almost anything from grilled vegetables and meat to white beans or breakfast tacos. I know that every time I make it, I end up adding it to all my meals for a few days.
- 2 to 3 loosely packed cups chopped radish greens, washed
- 2 tablespoons diced shallot (about 1 medium shallot)
- 2 teaspoons diced garlic (about 1 clove)
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- Pinch salt
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- Heat about ½ cup water in small saucepan until simmering. Add radish greens. Toss to coat and cook until softened and dark green, about 30 seconds. Turn off heat, remove greens and squeeze out excess water.
- Using a blender or food processor, blend cooked greens with shallot, garlic, rice vinegar, salt and olive oil until combined, but still coarse. Drain excess liquid if desired, and keep chilled up to 4 days until ready to use. Makes ⅔ cup.
- Try a "root to leaves" dish: On a piece of rye toast, spread avocado, sliced radish and a drizzle of Radish Green Chimichurri.