There are many types of radishes and all have significant health benefits. The Daikon radish is high on that scale. It is also one of those vegetables that on its own doesn’t scream at you with flavor, which means it will take on the seasonings you pair with it.
The Daikon radish is a Japanese white radish, milder than its red (or black) counterpart. It’s in peak season and available at most markets now. It can be eaten cooked or raw and provides a wonderful crunch to salads.
Daikon is very low in calories and thus a great choice if you are trying to lose weight. It is also rich in enzymes that help in digesting fats and starchy foods. There have been a few studies which indicate that Daikon may have some benefit in fighting or preventing cancer. Daikon is a good source of many of the same compounds that give broccoli its anti-cancer reputation. And finally, it’s an excellent source of phosphorus, potassium and vitamin C – a great immune booster this time of year.
Daikon and Kale Salad – 6 Servings
Kale and chia seeds provide an extra dose of fiber. You can also add the radish greens, or save them for your green smoothie.
2 organic cucumbers, peeled, halved, seeded, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 tsp fine sea salt
8 ounces daikon, peeled, cut into 2×1/4-inch sticks
1-2 cooked beets, cubed or sliced into matchsticks
1/2 bunch kale, shredded
1/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar*
2 TB raw agave, or any natural sweetener
1 TB minced fresh ginger
2 TB chopped cilantro
1 TB sesame oil, untoasted
1 tsp chia seeds
Dash cayenne pepper, more to taste
Toss cucumbers with sea salt in colander. Place colander over bowl and let stand 15 minutes. Rinse, drain and pat dry with paper towels.
Place radish sticks in medium bowl. Cover with water. Soak 15 minutes. Drain and pat dry with paper towels.
Stir vinegar and next 4 ingredients in large bowl to blend. Add cucumbers, radish, kale and beets; toss to coat. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours. (You may want to add beets after, as they will bleed.)
Garnish with chia seeds and cayenne pepper to taste.
*If using seasoned rice vinegar, omit sweetener