Winter is not the season to find the greatest variety of fruits and vegetables at Farmers Market, especially in January. But today was more like spring than winter, and I was able to find some of my favorites that I can’t find later in the year. So far I’ve only been able to find these special radishes and turnips at Maria Wright’s booth. I asked her today to show them to you and explain the differences.
Maria introduced me to these vegetables last year about this time. I couldn’t believe there was actually a turnip that could be eaten raw that did not have a strong flavor. So Maria cut me a slice of the Red Heart Turnip and let me try it. It’s crisp with almost no flavor, but I still enjoy eating it peeled and sliced. ( The skin does have a strong flavor, beautiful as it is. ) You see it here, half peeled, with a creamy white interior. It would be very good with a dip. I was too lazy to make one today.
My husband prefers the more pungent radish. I don’t like anything with even a slight bite. Maria also let me sample the Watermelon Radish you see here, but it was too strong for me. I don’t like radishes of any kind or even green onions if they are raw. So I get the Watermelon Radishes for my husband, who eats them with gusto. These don’t need to be peeled, but I do scrub them well before slicing to eat. I think it’s a beautiful vegetable when cut.
I often use these vegetables when I am having a sandwich or burger lunch, since they are quick and easy to fix. Just scrub and / or peel and slice. Arrange on a plate to pass around. They are also good to make ahead and put in the frig for snacking.