Radish greens

The saga of my productive garden is becoming legendary for its inability to produce.

We had a lovely day at 22 degrees Celsius and a mild breeze making even full sunshine very pleasant. I tackled the front lawn, if you can call it that.

I have a young man come to cut my lawn every two weeks, but I canceled this week because the grass had not grown. The only thing that had grown was a fine crop of dandelion-like weeds. They were waving their pretty yellow flowers about a foot off the ground. My basic goal was to get the flower heads off; while I was at it, I dug up as many of their roots as I could.

I found a little red-handled tool, distressed with age that my father had used many years back – he died in ’80 so it’s almost 30 years, give or take a few months.  It looks much like a shortened sabre with a curved handle and the blade part  forked at the bottom like a snake’s tongue. One inserts this in at the centre of the weed and levers the tap root free of the soil. Then, the weed can be wiggled out of the soil easily, most times without breaking the root. If the root breaks, then the remainder left in the soil persistently will simply re build the plant and give up another finely rooted yellow flower waving, mockingly, “ha ha!!!” in a week or so.

As I was pulling out the deeply rooted  weeds, I was pulling out anything that was just starting. With each of these littler weeds came fistfuls of moss. I didn’t have a lawn. No wonder it hadn’t grown in the past two weeks. Moss and weeds – that’s what my lawn man has been cutting!

Typical of my gardening efforts, midway through my allotted time for weed-pulling, this very effective tool split in half just where the metal part and the handle met; so I gave up weeding and turned my attention to other bits and pieces that needed doing in the garden.

One of these was harvesting the radishes. Of course, we all know what a radish should look like. You can get them at fifty cents a fine bunch of about ten radishes. The leaves were so high on my radishes I was convinced that I should get something for my diligence in planting and tending these crunchy, refreshing,  “easy to grow” “ready to eat in 45 days”vegetables.

It was no surprise to me. My green thumb having once again received the inept award this year, the radishes came out with red roots alright, but there wasn’t an edible round globe to be seen. The roots were long, like two inches long or more, hairy and thick like a straw. I couldn’t resist, thinking that perhaps I had purchased an odd variety of seed, and I chewed into one of these once they were washed.  Woody. Unchewable. No taste at all.

But I was in possession of a vast amount of radish greens.

If that’s my crop, I say, then what can I do with it?  So I hopped onto the Internet and Googled “radish greens”.

Much to my delight, there were a number of references for radish greens.

I started and ended with this one. Its pages look so yummy. And since the recipe was out there for everyone to see, I thought I just might try to cook up some Radish Greens  Soup.

http://veganvisitor.wordpress.com/2009/06/09/dont-toss-those-radish-greens/

I’ve been at it all night. After washing them, I tossed them in a large pot to steam for ten minutes. They were soft and very green.When I tasted them, they tasted pretty green too. There’s not much flavour – but then again, there are a lot of vegetables without flavour that are made delicious by the spices and herbs or garlic and butter that one seasons them with. So I added in onion and parsley, salt and pepper and some chicken flavouring. That made it taste much better.

Then I took my hand held blender and began the blending process.  The greens don’t look too appetizing by themselves and the photo on the Vegan Visitor blog looks so scrumptious.  I was looking for that kind of smoothness. Only, every time I put the  blender in the pot, it would start dancing on it’s own. It did not want to be led systematically into chopping up my soup.

Finally, it began to whir in an unfamiliar tune. You know how motors all have their own sounds. I drew it out of the pot. It was as tangled as if it had gone underwater and been attacked by green octopus; or perhaps it resembled Medusa’s head full of tangled snakes.  The stems, you see, are woody and stringy but I didn’t know that in advance.

So there I was at midnight, still trying to free the blender blade from these incredibly tough  threads of Radish. They are so durable they could be used for dental floss. Now there’s an idea. Organic dental floss!

I had a long needle from my upholstering project and I’d dig it in under the tangled mass and pull out what I could, then cut it with scissors; extract that, and then begin again. I got it all, alright, but I was weary of it long before it was done.

Did I taste the soup, you may well ask? Of course!

It’s an interesting taste. The bit of mint lifts it right out of the ordinary, and yes it’s good. I added some yogurt to get it to go creamy and that improved the recipe, if you ask me. I would have tried sour cream if I had any, but I wasn’t about to go grocery shopping at midnight.

In the end, after three hours of work, I have three large yogurt containers filled with radish green pulp more or less blended. With the rich harvest this year, there’s not much room left in the freezer, so I guess I’ll be living on Radish Greens soup for the next little while.

Anyone want to come over for soup?

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2 Responses to “Radish greens”

  1. wrjones Says:

    Why don’t we go to Taco Bell for the evening?

  2. ARTISETERNAL Says:

    Bill,
    I thought you would never ask! I’d adore to go. I hope they don’t serve radishes, not even in their salads. I don’t think I want to see another one for a whole year!

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