The mantra of my cooking in everyday life is to “cook fresh, eat fresh.” Recently I learned that at least 10 percent of the food on my plate should be fresh vegetables–preferably in their natural form, with less cooking.
Eating fresh is easy when you find fresh vegetables you love. I fell in love with daikon radishes when I first tried them pickled in a bahn mi sandwich. And this week in a grocery store I found a perfect fresh crunchy white daikon radish. So you can be sure my lunch has included fresh daikon radish with leaves. (Yes, you can eat the leaves!)
Daikon radishes are lesser known to the western world, but in India they’re one of the most popular root vegetables and are available in red or white, and sold with the leaves. The daikon radish is the crispest, coolest root vegetable and can be used in a variety of dishes. In India, there are many recipes for using this radish, including famous Mooli Paratha.
The health benefits of this radish are numerous, especially when eaten with the greens. The greens provide more fiber and iron, and have the properties of a diuretic.
It’s important to choose healthy foods like daikon radish because the food we consume influences our body and mind. That is why it is said, “you are what you eat.” Plants and vegetables give away their life to give life to human beings. Food is alive; it is perceived as having a life energy of its own.
My idea is always that recipes should be simple, quick, healthy and appetizing! So here are three simple daikon radish recipes that I will share with you.
Fresh Radish Salad
The first recipe is just to wash, peel and cut a fresh radish and its leaves, and then sprinkle it with salt, pepper and lemon. That’s it! Usually I eat it with my Indian thepla flatbread to make it a satisfying meal.
Easy Radish Sauté
Wash, peel and cut the fresh radish and greens and sauté them in a little olive oil. Sprinkle some light seasoning like pepper and lemon. Enjoy them with pasta or paratha! Equally amazingly satisfying.
Radish & Pickle Condiment
Wash, peel and cut the radish and greens and add pickle masala, available at Indian grocery stores. Sprinkle in a little mustard oil. Mix well. You can set this in refrigerator for a week or so. It goes great as a condiment to any meal.