Recipe: Matt & Ted Lee’s Radish Butter
There’s nothing more appropriate to do with a fresh spring radish than dip it in creamy butter and sharp flakes of salt. It’s a terrific combination and I adore it — which is why we just had to share the Lee Brothers’ clever riff on the classic.
When you dip radishes in butter and salt, it’s a perfect blend of spicy and sweet, with the hot radish mellowed out by the butter, its bite smoothed by the salt.
You get the same effect by blending the radishes with the butter, except it’s inverted a bit, with a creamy sweetness up front and a heated finish. It’s even easier to eat, too — just spread and munch.
Radish butter is such a brilliant play on the classic French snack of dipping raw radishes in butter and sprinkling them with salt! I loved the texture and color of it, and it was great with both vegetables, crackers, or even toast in the morning. It’s a show-stopping but easy appetizer to put together that’s worthy of any dinner party.
– Christine, June 2015
- 1/2 pound
round red radishes, trimmed, at room temperature
- 6 tablespoons
unsalted butter, completely softened
- 1/4 teaspoon
kosher salt, or 1/2 teaspoon Maldon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon
freshly ground white or black pepper
- About 24
thinly sliced rye toast points, toasted slices of French bread, water crackers, 2-inch celery sticks, endive leaves, or romaine heart halves
Put the radishes in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the radish is chopped into very fine dice, four or five 3-second pulses.
Transfer the contents to a length of cheesecloth or a double thickness of paper towels and wring out the excess liquid.
Transfer to a medium bowl and add 4 tablespoons of the butter.
With a rubber spatula, cream the radish and butter together, adding more butter 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture comes together in a smooth, pliable mass.
Transfer the mixture to a 2-cup ramekin or bowl, sprinkle the salt and pepper over the top, and serve immediately. (The butter will keep, covered with plastic wrap, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Remove it from the refrigerator 15 minutes before serving to let it soften. Sprinkle the salt and freshly ground pepper over the radish butter before serving.)
Reprinted from The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern: Knockout Dishes with Down-Home Flavor by Matt and Ted Lee. Copyright © 2009, Clarkson Potter.
→ Check out the Lee Brothers’ book! Simple Fresh Southern: Knockout Dishes with Down-Home Flavor by Matt and Ted Lee.