Molly’s Butter Glazed Radishes

What the heck does a picture of the cherry blossoms have to do with butter glazed radishes?  Your choices are:

  1. a)  Pink
  2. b)  Things that I “discovered” this year
  3. c)  A distraction for not having a picture of butter glazed radishes

Ok, this one is actually a trick question because it’s all of the above.

It’s funny that I just talked about food prejudices and how I have been guilty of letting my dislike of one form of a food keep me from enjoying it in any form.  I must add radishes to that list.

My previous knowledge of radishes was limited to them as hard rounds in my iceberg lettuce salad.  Not even fresh and peppery, they were blah and bland; so I banished them.  I read curiously about radishes and butter, wondering how people could find that enjoyable.  I could not comprehend the attraction to radishes anymore than I could understand why sane, rational people would brave the crowds of tourists to see the cherry blossoms in Washington, DC.

And then I did.

I realized that people come from all over the world to see the cherry blossoms in bloom.  Here I am with them a short metro ride away and I had never been bothered to see them.  I missed the peak blooming period but was still awed by their gentle grandeur.   I don’t think much can rival the beauty of cherry blossoms falling in the breeze like snowflakes.  And since I got there early enough to avoid the crush of tourists, I enjoyed that beauty in quiet solitude.

I think my visit to the cherry blossoms was right around the same time I decided to give butter glazed radishes a try.  Something about the way Molly described them made me curious…”…sweet, almost, and very delicate.  It’s quiet.”  I admit, I had been wrong about the cherry blossoms.  Maybe I was wrong about the radishes too?

Not only did those butter glazed radishes taste absolutely delightful –  tender and delicate, warm and buttery – the cooking transformed them from hard red to a soft, gentle pink.  Clearly I hadn’t given radishes enough credit to be more than just something crunchy in salad.

So on both accounts, I stand corrected.

Molly’s Butter Glazed Radishes

Adapted from Molly Stevens (All About Braising) as seen on Orangette

  • 1 pound radishes
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/8 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

If your radishes are not already trimmed, trim the roots and greens.  Soak the radishes for 10 minutes in a bowl of water to loosen any dirt then drain the water and scrub the radishes.

Place the radishes in a single layer in a 10 inch skillet.  Add the butter, water, salt, and sugar and bring to a simmer.  Cover the skillet and continue to simmer for 20 to 30 minutes or until a paring knife can easily pierce the radishes.

Remove the lid and carefully shake the skillet to roll the radishes all around the sauce.  Continue simmering another 5 to 10 minutes or until the liquid cooks down to a glaze that coats the radishes, increasing the heat if necessary.

{printable recipe}

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8 Responses to Molly’s Butter Glazed Radishes

  1. JenniferA says:

    I’ve always loved radishes but have never thought to cook them. I’ll give it a try next spring. I’ve never seen the cherry blossoms in DC either, but I did see them in Nashville once. They were gorgeous, but they gave me & a co-worker massive allergy attacks. I’ll continue to admire them from afar. 🙂

  2. minxknits says:

    We eat cooked radishes all the time using a similar recipe, but without the sugar. Mmmm!

  3. Jenna says:

    Thank you for this post, because I also have been prejudiced against radishes and haven’t been able to understand what people see/taste in them. Now I actually feel excited to try them!

  4. Jen Schall says:

    This sounds good!! I have to admit that I have had similar feelings about radishes in the past. Occasionally I will thinly slice them and put them into a salad (and doused with quite a bit of ranch dressing, they taste OK!)… But, I never had any ideas of what else to do with them. Putting this recipe on my list for the next time we get radishes from the CSA. (Which, of course, now that I know what to do with them, will not be any time soon!)

    • Wendi says:

      Jen, at least now you have a plan for when the radishes appear in your CSA delivery. I hope this will change your relationship with radishes. I also wonder how they would be if you roasted them?

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