Afternoon Indulgence / Radishes, Done Right

For an afternoon pick-me-up, it doesn’t get much better than radishes: crunchy and just a touch spicy, they’re light, satisfying, and completely fun to eat. And what isn’t made better by the addition of butter and salt? I’ll tell you: nothing.

Although radishes can be eaten year-round, they’re best in winter and spring, and are a touch smaller and spicier during the “off” seasons. The radishes pictured here were very good, but not perfect specimens: what you’re looking for are firm bulbs, healthy, green leaves (these are fresh-tasting and delicious and can be removed and chopped up for use in salads) and uncracked skins (cracks mean they’re getting on in age).

Radishes with butter and salt also make an easy, elegant hors d’oeuvre: so much healthier and more interesting than chips and dip. Just wash them well, slice in half (or serve whole), set on a plate alongside small dishes of room-temperature butter and pink sea salt, and let your guests smear and sprinkle at will.

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