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Saturday, December 14, 2013

Heirloom Vegetable of the Month - China Rose Radish


China Rose Radishes
I have just received one of my favorite heirloom seed catalogs in the mail and reading through all the descriptions of all the wonderful seeds has inspired me to do a new post every month about a different heirloom vegetable.  This month I will start with the China Rose Radish.  Which is one of my favorite radishes.




History:
You probably could have guessed, by the name, but the China Rose radish originated from China, and is believed to have evolved directly out of the wild radish, making it one of the oldest radishes.  It is said to have been introduced to North America by Jesuit monks in the 1950's. 

China Rose radishes are grown better in the fall/winter which is why you will most likely only find these radishes at my table in the fall and not the spring.  They are long radishes verses the normal round radish that you would find in the store, but their long root make them wonderful for slicing.

How to Eat:
Can be used just like you would any other radish, but their long root make them very easy to slice.  Many people only think of using radishes in salads or snacking on them, but radishes (especially winter radishes) are also great roasted sauteed, fried, and steamed.  Many people do not know but you can also cook with the radish tops and use them much like you would other types of greens and turnip tops.

 Here is a good site that gives some good ideas of what you can do with radishes and explains some of the best uses for some different types of radishes.
The Warmth of a Winter Radish

Nutrition Data:
~ Radish leaves are an excellent source of calcium.
~ Can be beneficial to diabetics since they are low on the glycemic-index, and may actually help stabilize blood sugar.
~ It is high in potassium which may help lower high blood pressure, caused by high sodium intake.
~ 9 Reasons to "Eat Your Radishes"!
1. Naturally Cooling  2. Sooth Sore Throats  3. Aids Digestion  4. Prevents Viral Infections  5. Eliminates Toxins  6. Protects Against Cancer  7. Relieves Indigestion  8. Low in Calories, High in Nutrients  9. Keeps you Hydrated
The above reasons come from Full Circle, 9 Reasons to "Eat Your Radishes"!  You can read the details about all the reasons, just click on the above link to visit the website.
~ Low in Calories, Cholesterol, and Saturated Fat
~ High in Vitamin A and C, Calcium, Fiber, Potassium, and Magnesium
~ Nutrition Data for Radishes, Raw




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