Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Germany: The Radish Festival and Simple Radish Salad

A Dear Friend from California had a saying when she lived here.  If her kids were not overly enthusiastic about the European experience, she would say, "Hey, you can't do that in Coronado."  Needless to say, it has become one of my favorite expressions even though I have never even visited Coronado!

That is how I described Sunday's plans to Dear Daughter.  You can imagine her look...  I had noticed in the local American newspaper that a small village within an hour of us was hosting a Rettichfest, or Radish Festival.  Ok, perhaps there are towns in the US that celebrate the Radish but I had never heard of any and the advertisement promised local foods and radish specialities.  Evidently, radishes were the principal crop of the area.  The weather was nice (for a change) and off we went.  We promised our young one that we would spend no longer than two hours at the fest and then she would be back in time to be totally bored by the neighborhood kids.

It was not a bad little fest and it provided us a surprisingly nice afternoon.  In the center of the fest area was a stage and surrounding it, those popular fest tables and tents.  Food centered on bratwurst and other pork products and naturally, radish dishes.  Most of these seemed to be in the form of various salads accompanied by buttered brown bread.  I had never been a fan of radishes before moving to Europe; I found them too sharp, too spicy.  This time of year, the radishes are quite mellow - almost even sweet.  We sampled the Rettichspirale.  See the picture below...have you ever seen a radish this size (no further comments, please).

So, as you can see, it was a giant radish that was sliced into a spiral.  It was seasoned with salt and chives and a tiny bit of a light yogurt dressing was poured over the top.  It was quite good.  Last year, I decided to grow radishes.  My first attempt resulted in three.  Yes, that is correct.  I harvested three of the tiniest radishes you have ever seen.  About all I could do with them was use them for garnish.  I tried again this year and while they are still tiny...look at one of my harvests!

But the biggest success of the afternoon were the auto-scooters!  That is what they call bumper cars in Germany and my Dears LOVE them.  The quality of a fest is rated by whether or not there is a bumper car kiosk.  So, this one was a success!

Now for the recipe.

Easy Radish Salad

Easy Radish Salad

1 bunch of radishes, washed and thinly sliced
1 bunch of chives, chopped
juice of one lemon
1/2 cup of sour cream
1 tsp sugar

Mix the sour cream with the chives, sugar and lemon juice.  Season the sliced radishes with salt and mix with the dressing.

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