What do radish greens taste like?
I love buying fresh bunches of radishes from the farmers market and am always looking for good ways to use the green leaves that come with them. They are very high in nutritional value and really delicious with a slightly pungent flavour like rocket, watercress or mustard greens but milder.
Zero waste living
I have always seen my mum using the tops of all sorts of vegetables from carrots and beets to mooli and radishes. This whole nose to tail eating concept is not news to Indian folks! My mum makes a delicious quickly sauteed dish of the greens which are really delicious served as a side with some dal and rice. So I am always on the lookout for new ways to use the leaves of vegetables.
How I got the recipe for radish leaf soup
Living in Paris, I would always buy a couple of bunches of radishes at my thrice-weekly farmers markets at end of my street on Boulevard Raspail. The produce was absolutely fresh and beautifully displayed bursting with full French pride. Walking through the market first stop would be to get a freshly fried potato gallete. Stand in a sunny spot to enjoy the crispy hot buttery Gillette (this was a Sunday treat only) Then I would make my way from the meat stalls, to the cheese, to the various flowers and veg. I would try to acquire the best freshest items and get progressively happier as my bag got fuller and heavier! Then it was all about getting home and spreading out my haul on the wooden counter, admiring it and coming up with ideas on how to cook them.
Over time I became a familiar face to the stall holders and despite my terrible French they became quite friendly and would offer some sage advice on how to cook something or throw some free goodies here or there. A few vague directions by naming some ingredients for a soup was one of the best things I got from them. I would never have thought to put dijon mustard in a soup, but boy does it work!
I rushed home to try something new with my radish tops and was absolutely delighted with the results. The flavours are so perfect I think I would happy have this at a Michelin star place. It’s not only a beautiful plate of food but the flavours are just spot on. I absolutely loved this soup since I first tried it and urge everyone to save the green tops and make this beautiful soup with them.
How to use radish greens
To preserve the radish greens be sure to cut the tops from the radishes wash and cook straight away or keep separately in a cool dry place to maximise freshness. These are best used on the day or within 24 hours as they deteriorate quite quickly.
Can you make this radish greens soup healthier?
Sometimes in order to make the soup healthier, I use half milk and half water for the required quantity of water, which allows me to add a much smaller quantity of cream or cream fraiche towards the end. Here I would substitute half the water quantity with whole milk and then add a tablespoon or so of cream at the end.
What dairy options can I use to make radish greens soup?
Feel free to use sour cream, cream fraiche or heavy cream for the dairy component. The cream fraiche will give a nice tangy flavour and is quite French.
Variations on radish leaf soup
I also like to add some lemon zest to the soup at the end sometimes when I use cream fraiche, it gives it a nice twist.
Make ahead and freezing notes for radish leaf soup
This soup can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to four days easily. It is perfect for reheating on the stove top or in the microwave and then serving with the chosen garnishes on top. You can freeze this soup for upto three months.
Radish Greens Soup
- 1 medium saucepan
- 2 bunches Radishes with leaves cut and wash leaves thoroughly
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 med potato chopped (200g)
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly cracked pepper
- 3 cups water or half milk half water (see note*)
- 1 vegetable sock cube crumbled
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 4 radishes sliced thinly
- 1 tbsp spring onion greens or chives sliced finely
- 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil to drizzle on top
- pepper freshly cracked
- Heat oil in a heavy based saucepan or pot.
- Add the chopped onions and potatoes and cook for five minutes on medium heat.
- Add your chopped garlic and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Add the water and crumble in the vegetable stock cube and cook for 10-15 minutes or till the potatoes are cooked through.
- Add your radish greens and then the cream. Stir and cook till the greens are wilted.
- Add your mustard and mix through cook for a minute or so till the flavours are combines. Taste and adjust seasoning to your taste.
- Blend the soup using your choice of blender, reheat and serve at once with your choice of garnishes.