Foraged Wild Radish
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Wild radish is entirely edible. It grows to one meter tall and has dark green, deeply lobed leaves. They are peppery and earthy, much like those of the common cultivated radish. The root of Wild radish is white, long and slender and has a tough outer core that must be peeled. It has a dense texture and mild flavor like that of kohlrabi. Wild radish blossoms have four white or pale pink petals with purple veins. They have a spicy horseradish bite with honey undertones. The fruit of Wild radish are segmented pods called siliques. They are 4-8 cm long and shaped like a stork beak. They taste just like radish and should be foraged when young before they dry and develop a corky texture.
Wild radish may be found year-round but it blooms in the spring.
Wild radish is an herbaceous annual in the Brassicaceae family that is also known as Rattail radish, Jointed radish, Cadlock or Jointed Charlock. Botanically named Raphanus raphanistrum, it is similar to the common cultivated radish in the appearance and taste of its leaves, but its root is considerably smaller and very fibrous.
Wild radish is rich in vitamins B and C, potassium, rutin, and folic acid.
Blossoms are the mildest part of Wild radish and may be used as a garnish or to infuse flavored vinegars. Before the buds open, there is a brief time when the florets may be eaten raw or lightly steamed. Young leaves make tender salad greens, but when mure they become hardier and should be sautéed or stewed. Wild radish root is very hard and must be boiled to sufficiently soften. Radish pods may be pickled or eaten raw in salads and crudités. When the pods ripen their seeds can prepared like that of Wild mustard. The spicy earthiness of Wild radish is complimented by chive, dill, scallion, pecans, cider vinegar and goat cheese.
Wild radish was a regular part of the Costanoan Indian diet.
Wild radish is native to the Mediterranean. Today it can be found in most temperate climates across Europe, Russia, Australia, and the United States. Wild radish is common in fallow agricultural fields and along road sides or other disturbed areas.
Recipes that include Foraged Wild Radish. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Delectable Victuals||Sauteed Watercress, Radish Greens and Radish Seed Pods|
|Fresh Local and Best||Sherry's Radish Tops Pesto|
|Gardenista||Pickled Wild Radish Pods|