Pesto Daikon Rollups
Finally! I have been wanting to put these babies together for what seems like eons now and I finally got around to it. I kept putting it off because I got a new mandolin that I am seriously afraid of. Those things are so sharp! I’m really bad at reading manuals, too. So I’ve been staring at the thing sitting on my wire shelf in the kitchen since Christmas ( yes, Christmas) and I finally got the gumption to take it down and make friends with it. And what do you know? It worked like a charm! Okay, I won’t lie. The first few slices were not so much fun. But once I got the hang of it, I stopped cursing.
What’s so special about daikon radish? Well, the flavor for one. If you’ve never tried it and you like radishes, put this one on your shopping list! Daikon radish is believed to help the body burn fat. It is extremely low in fat and cholesterol, but dense with nutrients, making it a great addition to any effective weight loss program. It contains large amounts of enzymes that aid in fat and starch digestion as well as high levels of vitamin C, phosphorus and potassium. It also contains other phyto-nutrients that fight cancer.
I’m sorry to say that if you don’t own a mandolin, this recipe may not be executable. I don’t know how you could possible slice a daikon radish, lengthways, as thin as it needs to be in order to roll it. But if you do have a mandolin, it’s worth the effort. This dish makes such an elegant appetizer and would be a great one to take to a party or a potluck. And, of course, the flavor of the radish with the pesto is too amazing for words.
Give it a go!
- one large daikon radish, about 2″ in diameter (try to find one that is very firm and straight)
- one recipe Oil-free Pesto*
- one large, red radish, 1 TBS fresh parsley and some extra basil for garnish
* For this purpose, use less water than the recipe calls for. About ½ cup should work. You want the pesto to be quite thick so that you can use it as a paste to stuff the rolls. You will undoubtedly wind up with extra pesto which you can use in another recipe or use for more daikon rolls if you choose.
- Trim the ends of the radish, peel it and slice lengthwise, using a mandolin (CAREFULLY). You will wind up with lots of extra slices from the outsides that will be too narrow. So be prepared to use them in another dish. I just julienned mine and tossed them with a bit of vinegar and sliced onion for a radish salad. You should get about 8 slices from one large daikon radish.
- Place a layer of pesto along each strip of radish and gently roll them up. If your slices are thicker at one end (mine were), start rolling from the thicker end.
- Garnish with slices of red radish, chopped parsley and basil leaves.