A vegetable for healthy digestion
Black radishes are delicious vegetables which are unfortunately somewhat forgotten. Their unique flavor makes them stand out, and it also provides a health benefit: it is just spicy enough to stimulate digestion! The spiciness comes from the high quantity of sulfur-rich compounds.
Black radishes are also:
- a source of vitamin B9 (for cellular renewal, particularly important for pregnant women for fetal development, for growing children, and for convalescents).
- a source of potassium (for the nervous system, muscular function, and blood pressure)
They also contain:
- glucosinolates (cancer-fighting compounds)
When is the right
time to eat them?
Fall and winter.
Black radishes are an excellent example of off-season vegetables. They are in season from September to January.
or urban balcony?
Black radishes (Raphanus sativus var. Niger, from the Brassicaceae family) are annuals that grow well in rich, well-drained soil, in full sun.
To learn everything you need to know about growing black radishes, read the page on growing advice.
storing black radishes
Choose your black radishes well:
- They should be firm and uniformly black in color.
Properly store your black radishes:
- In the refrigerator: Two to three days in the vegetable drawer, as they quickly lose their crunch.
How to prepare black radishes
Just wash them to remove any remaining soil. You can leave on their black skin, which contrasts beautifully with the white inside.
Black radishes go well with…
Raw: You can eat black radishes grated, made into “noodles,” or cut into rounds; plain, with salt, with a remoulade sauce, or mixed with other raw vegetables. They add their spicy flavor and a bit of novelty to composed winter salads. Black radishes pair well with scallops, sheep’s milk cheese, feta, beets, sardines, arugula, smoked fish, and more.
Cooked: They are a perfect way to add some spice to mashed potatoes or pumpkin soups, or they can be made into original homemade chips.
Young children can try black radishes starting at 18 months, cooked in purees or soups so they can get used to the spicy taste.
And everyone else…
The spiciness of black radishes may take some getting used to, but their crunch is a good reason to try them out…and like them. People who are particularly sensitive to spice can steam them before using them in recipes.
Where do they come from?
Origins and varieties
Origins: The main producers of black radishes are China, Japan, Austria, Germany, Italy, France, and the Netherlands.
Varieties: Black radishes are some of the large radishes and turnips in season in summer and fall or in winter. Two main varieties are cultivated: the Noir Long Maraîcher and the Noir Gros de Paris, meant to be stored over the winter. These varieties do particularly well as winter crops, because with their white, firm, and compact flesh, they can be stored throughout much of winter without sprouting or becoming hollow.
Today, variants with white roots also exist, including in Germany, where they are known by the names Rettich and Radi. The black radish harvested in summer is white in color and less spicy than the winter black radish.