Cooking at Home: Radish Greens

Elizabeth Keyser

Elizabeth Keyser is a local writer living in Fairfield. Her work has been published in The New York Times, GQ, American Photo, The New York Post, Connecticut Magazine, as well as CT newspapers. She writes restaurant reviews and a food column for the Fairfield County Weekly.

Radishes and chard were the last things growing in the garden. A creature had gnawed on one of the radishes, so it was time to pull them up. But I wasn’t just harvesting the root. I was eying their bright healthy-looking greens.

Yes, you can eat radish greens. They contain more vitamin C, calcium, potassium and folate than the root, and while peppery, they’re mellower than the root. They say you can eat them raw, but I’m turned off by the fury-prickly texture. I make soup with them.

Radish leaf soup is an old French recipe. You can find it in Larousse Gastronomique, but it’s easy enough to wing it. This is a quick soup. You’ll be eating in this mildly piquant green elixir in 30 minutes.

Radish Greens Soup

Sauté a chopped onion and garlic in a little olive oil and butter over low heat. Add the leaves and stew them until they are wilted. At this point, I added bits and pieces from the garden (a nubbin of a golden beet and its leaves), and the fridge (some chopped leek). I poured in the chicken stock I’d made the night before and brought it to a simmer.

The soup was done once the vegetables had become tender, about 20 minutes. To get the consistency just right, I scooped out the vegetables and a little broth and whoozgied them with an immersion blender. 

Ah, lunch. A bowl of delicious, energizing green soup, served with buttered croutons and sliced radishes.