November 10: Daikon Radish

Children often prefer raw vegetables to cooked, and can be tempted to try unfamiliar ones if there’s something good to dip them in.  Daikon radish is a good addition to seasonal plates of cut-up broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and radishes:  it’s flavorful and mildly spicy, a good contrast to other crunchy vegetables.  

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Quick dips can be made from readily available ingredients.  I like to thin goat cheese with yogurt and a little basil vinegar.  You can also mix yogurt or buttermilk, sour cream, and a little bit of mayonnaise to your (or your children’s) taste.  Lots of people use ranch dressing as dip;here’s a recipe for a homemade version.  If you don’t have buttermilk, yogurt and a little milk is a good substitute.

Once you have a basic creamy dip, you can add all kinds of things:

  • Herbs—fresh, frozen, or dried.  Lots or just a little
  • Chopped dried tomatoes
  • Minced onions or garlic
  • Curry powder

If you add so many things that your dip is chunky, blend it with a stick blender or food processor or regular blender.

Here are two recipes using daikon radish, a sweet pickle with carrots, and a bok choy stir fry. Daikon is also a great addition to kimchi.  Although it’s often made with napa cabbage, you can also make it with regular cabbage, which will be available locally throughout the late fall.  Here’s one method.