Sunday, July 27, 2008

Rats!!

What are these delicious looking tidbits, you ask?

Why -- they're rattail radishes, of course!
And they're quite a bit tastier than their name implies!

We had them for the first time this summer when they arrived as part of our CSA share. These edible seed pods have the crunch of a green bean, but the spicy bite of a radish. Edible-pod radishes are members of the brassica family, along with broccoli, kale, cabbage, mustard, and radishes. They are often called aerial radishes, or Java radishes after their place of origin. Grown primarily in India and Southeast Asia, these delicacies are less common in the states. But, they seem to be making appearances here and there (and the smart people at LotFotL are one of the farms growing them and selling them at farmer's markets around Milwaukee).

In addition to eating them right out of hand, they're great in salads or sauteed just until crisp. When cooked, they do lose a bit of their bite -- so when cooked, they appeal to even non-radish fans.

Got any great recipes for rat tails? We'd love to hear about them!!


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6 comments:

  1. WOW! I have never seen those. Sounds great. And they do look like rat tails--grose. My dog just caught a (dead) rat yesterday. He was very proud...probably died of some horrible rat disease exposing us all to the plague.

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  2. Oh, ick!
    I can just see the look of pride on your dog's face, though!

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  3. I don't have any recipes for you, but I'd definitely be interested in trying them!

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  4. I've never heard of these Rat Tail radish/bean veggies. Very interesting...

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  5. We, at LotFotL, like to saute them, chop em up and eat them in salads, infuse vodka with them or pickle them for future use as bloody mary fare. In the Gudjarat region of India, they would be sauteed in clarified butter(ghee) with aromatic herbs and spices of choice, or breaded in chickpea flour ahead of pan frying. I'm still unsure as to why some are purple and some green. I don't know of anyone else growing them, but I am very excited about pushing into the foodstream a bit more. If anyone would be interested in growing some in containers on their porch next spring, I'll gladly supply seeds. Thanks! Tim LotFotL Community Farm

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  6. Hey Tim - Thanks for dropping by! I love the idea of pickling some of those rat tails... excellent idea! Maybe next year!

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