Crispy Tempura Radishes with Dip

a plate with a smear of vegan mayo with crispy tempura radishes

Have heard of “root to shoot” eating, the sustainable low waste approach to making the most of vegetables. Radishes are a delicious root, but I’d never considered what I could do with the radish leaves (other than look at them as an indicator of freshness when buying them in bunches). The tassle of leaves creates the perfect little handle for dipping radishes. They are not just pretty on a plate, but are edible just like carrot tops and definitely shouldn’t be wasted; especially as they make up half the plant. Coated in a crispy tempura whole radishes prefect for dipping.

bunches or radishes at the farmers market

Choosing your radishes

Choose radishes with perky looking crisp green leaves. If the leaves are wilted or yellowing, it’s an indication that they’re not as fresh as they could be. Smaller leaves are also tastier as large leaves can be tough and have a strong flavour. 

Rice Flour Tempura Batter

  • 1 cup rice flour 
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch or potato starch
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • 1 to 1 1/4 cups cold sparkling water 
  • Ice cubes
  • canola or sunflower oil for cooking

Wash and trim roots of radishes. Depending on size, half or quarter large radishes, try to keep a portion of the leaves on each pieces, little radishes serve whole.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the rice flour, cornflour, baking powder, and salt.

Whisk while slowly pouring in the cold sparkling water, you want a smooth mixture with a thickness similar to pancake batter.

Place your mixing bowl over a larger bowl filled with ice cubes to keep the batter chilled.

 Heat a deep fryer or 5-8cm of oil in a pot to 175°C.

Dip and coat the radishes evenly in the chilled batter. 

Fry in small batches until crispy, about 3-4 minutes.

Place them on a tray lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.

To Serve

Serve while hot, with a dipping sauce of your choice or sprinkle with sea salt and stir some mint and lemon zest through an aquafaba mayo. Make a cooling plant-based tzatziki or choose an avocado whip

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