Monday, June 14, 2010

Kyle Bailey: Butter-Poached Radishes

I have rarely eaten radishes, and they have only ever been in a salad. Or one of those fancy rose things decorating the salad. Needless to say, they aren't high on the "yummy" list, but when I was in the grocery store the other day, they had a fabulous bag of bright red radishes. This bag of beauties was just begging me to buy them. At about $1.50 I'm not sure they count as an impulse buy, but I bought them without having any clue what to do with them. I seemed to distantly remember that I had seen them cooked in some forgotten tome of French food, but didn't remember when or where.

After snooping around on the internet (okay, so I'm ALWAYS snooping around on the internet), I found a recipe for butter-braised radishes from a chef that was at Allen and Delancey in New York City. And no, I don't know the restaurant, nor have I ever eaten there, but it sounds fancy, right? Well, the radishes were delicious, without the bite they have raw, almost tasting like cauliflower. And they are so pretty on the plate. I might have to reconsider my opinion of them.

I didn't follow the recipe exactly... I didn't have any raspberry wine vinegar (does anyone seriously keep this on hand??), so I used white wine vinegar. I didn't want to crack open my big box of vegetable stock for just ¼ cup, so I used some leftover beef broth from the fridge. And I didn't have French radishes (with the pretty white roots), just regular old red radishes which I sliced. They still turned out delicious.

Butter-Poached Radishes
Adapted from Kyle Bailey

1 bunch French breakfast radishes (about ¾ pound), greens and bottoms discarded
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3 dashes raspberry wine vinegar
¼ cup vegetable stock
1 teaspoon fresh tarragon

Depending on size, halve or quarter radishes lengthwise. Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet until melted.

Toss in the chopped radishes and season with salt and pepper. Sauté over low-medium heat until they become translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the raspberry wine vinegar and sauté approximately another minute until the radishes turn a vibrant pink. Add the vegetable stock and the remaining tablespoon of butter and cook for another minute to glaze the radishes.

Remove from heat and tear fresh tarragon leaves directly onto the radishes. Season with salt and pepper, and serve as an accompaniment to roast chicken, pan-seared duck breast, or meaty fish like striped bass.

Makes 4 servings

1 comment:

Adrian in Dallas said...

You're SO right about how rarely most of us (and you, obviously) actually eat radishes, and you're right again about this summer's lucious-looking bags of ruby-colored radishes. I, too, fell for their siren call. THANK YOU for posting the recipe! I plan to step away from my computer right this very minutes and try it. For the past week they've been staring at me first hopefully and then balefully as I pointed ignored them in the refrigerator...