This salad is a surprising and totally raw way to enjoy spring produce. If you’ve never eaten turnips raw before, you will love their slightly peppery, earthy flavor, especially when combined with the radishes and raw asparagus. If you can find very small or baby asparagus, definitely use them. Spring turnips usually are small and have not yet matured enough to have their purple ring. The entire bulb should be completely white; otherwise they may be tough and bland. This is a rather loose recipe—the real key is making everything taste yummy and look beautiful, so don’t worry too much about exact amounts. Just go by taste and aesthetics!
1. Whisk the olive oil, vinegar, lemon zest, mustard, shallot, poppy seeds, honey, and a pinch of salt together in a small bowl.
2. Using a mandoline, slice the turnips and radishes into thin translucent rounds. Put them in a large bowl and add the watercress. If the asparagus are large, slice them in half and add them to the bowl. Pour the dressing over and fold gently to combine.
3. Season with more salt if needed, arrange on plates, and sprinkle with the chives before serving.
Radishes are a fabulous food for anyone looking to cleanse and detoxify. They are incredibly effective at breaking up phlegm in the body, especially that resulting from overconsumption of heavy animal products. Radishes contain a lot of water as well, so they are filling but very low in calories, making them ideal for people trying to control their weight. In Chinese medicine, radishes are used to promote digestion, break down mucus, soothe headaches, and heal laryngitis. It is said that regular consumption will help prevent viral infections such as the common cold and influenza.
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Reprinted from My New Roots: Inspired Plant-Based Recipes for Every Season. Copyright © 2015 by Sarah Britton. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.