Spring is in full bloom, especially with the weekend that we just had. I love the sights, scents and sounds of spring. Something I really have taken notice of this year is all the “wild” red tulips in and around Spokane. Last week, I saw red tulips emerging everywhere, and it really has been a highlight of the season so far.
Last Sunday was spent playing outside in the yard all day. We enjoyed the sights of our own blooming bulbs (tulips included) while wiping away the debris of winter and prepping our raised beds for vegetable season. One of the first vegetables I enjoy planting are radishes. Although it’s been cool these past few weeks, it seems that the time has come and they’re ready to sow.
Radishes are so easy to plant and grow, and seeds are available just about everywhere. One seed is equal to one radish. Space them out evenly into freshly tilled soil, and in about one month, you’ll have a delicious bit of spring freshness.
Radishes are not just meant to be consumed raw with a dip or in a salad. I love cooked radishes, and one of my favorite ways is with butter and eggs as breakfast or a light lunch. They are also wonderful roasted and pickled, and their fresh spiciness is great with butter.
In this recipe, I recommend using good-quality butter. If you can’t find European butter (higher butter fat percentage), I suggest using unsalted butter as it’s a bit purer than butter with salt. You can always season it with an extra pinch of salt to bring out the flavor of the butter. Fresh chevre (goat cheese) makes a great addition to this recipe, as well.
Serving the butter-cooked radishes topped with eggs is my favorite way to prepare them. Although this recipe recommends pan frying the eggs, poached or scrambled would also work well.
The nuttiness of the browned butter pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the radishes and the creaminess of the eggs.
Just about any herb would complement the ingredients above, but I think a must is fresh chives. There’s something about the light onion flavor that ties together all the ingredients, and the bright green color against the pink radish makes for an appealing-looking plate.
Whether you grow your own radishes or pick up a small bunch from the grocery store or an early farmers market, give this easy and rewarding recipe a try for a new take on the very familiar radish.
Butter Radish and Eggs With Toast
2 tablespoons butter, European or unsalted
¼ white onion, chopped
1 bunch radishes, washed clean
Kosher salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
2 slices thick-sliced bread, preferably sourdough
Chives and/or herbs to garnish
In a skillet, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and let them cook until they begin to soften and the butter slightly browns.
Wash the radishes well, pulling off excess greens, although I like to leave some. Slice the radishes in half and add to the pan with the browned butter and onions.
Add the ground pepper and kosher salt to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3-5 minutes, or until the radishes begin to soften.
Taste the radish mixture for seasoning and doneness. I like mine with a little crunch. Remove from the heat and set aside; the radishes will continue to soften.
In the same pan, on medium heat, crack the eggs into the pan and cook until desired doneness. Toast the bread while the eggs are cooking.
To serve, place the toast on plates and divide the cooked radish onion mixture between them.
Set the cooked eggs on top, and garnish the toast with flakey salt and chives.
Yield: 2 servings
Local award-winning chef Ricky Webster, owner of Rind and Wheat and the new Morsel, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Webster on Instagram @rickycaker.
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