A unique and super-easy dish: Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette
If you’ve never roasted radishes before, you’re in for a very pleasant surprise with Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette.
This dish comes together in seconds and yet features such unusual flavors as to feel like an occasion. To me, celebrating spring is occasion enough.
A wacky invention
My introduction to radishes came from a cartoon. When I was little, one of the afternoon cartoon shows used to occasionally air an old “House of Tomorrow,” short by Tex Avery from the late 1940s. I was fascinated by all the inventions, especially this cleaver one: a Radish Burper (I found a video of it at the 4:47 mark).
I would laugh and laugh and laugh. Watching the whole short now, it’s rather outdated, to put it kindly, but I still wish that Radish Burpers existed. That’s a single use appliance I can get behind.
As no Radish Burper existed, I’d vowed never to eat radishes.
I love radishes
Thankfully, my adult self realized learned that eating radishes did not make you belch in polite company, and I also discovered just how delicious they are.
Come summer, there’s nothing I like more than a slice of bread, a little smear of salted butter, topped radishes sliced so thin they’re practically translucent. The peppery radish, still crunchy, contrasts with the salty buttered bread, and it’s seriously just the best thing you’ll ever taste. I also add them to all of my crudité and just plain old snack on them.
Alas, it’s not summer yet, so we roast our radishes
This time of year, though, the radishes aren’t coming from the farmer’s market, and they could use a little help. That’s where roasting comes in. Roasting radishes mellows out the end-of-winter radishes, and while, they are definitely not sweet, it changes the flavor.
Roasted asparagus welcomes spring, too, and this is an excellent way to use stalks that are a little thicker or that’s maybe been around an extra day.
Quick and easy, but unique
Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette comes together in less time than it will take you to preheat your oven, but, if you can, make the dressing ahead of time. It gives the shallots a chance to mellow out too. Otherwise, it’s practically not a recipe. Trim the asparagus ends, chop the radish, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and a couple of sprigs of thyme.
The roasting time will really depend on the size of your radish and asparagus. If you have thin asparagus stalks, or particularly stubborn radish, you may need to rescue the asparagus a bit early, but this only rarely happens to me. You want to be able to easily pierce the radish, but there should still be a bit of give.
That Sherry Vinaigrette, though
If you’ve never tried it before, you’re going to become a sherry vinegar evangelist. It’s nutty and just a teeny tiny bit sweet.
Sherry vinegar makes a most delicious salad dressing that complements roasted radish and asparagus perfectly. After tasting it, you’ll probably put it into your regular rotation, and not just when you are making Roasted Radish and Asparagus.
However, sherry vinegar can be a bit hard to find, and it can be a bit pricey if you’re in the States. If you don’t have it on hand, but have walnut oil, just omit the mustard and make a vinaigrette that way. If you don’t have that, then maybe try the Maple Dijon dressing from the Brussels Sprouts Salad post. You can find recipes for several vinaigrettes (I really like them) in the Wonder & Sundry Recipe Box for subscribers.
Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette serving ideas
Serve Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette hot for your vegetable course, or serve it cold in a salad, maybe with some farro, too. You could also roast some other vegetables separately and have a lovely springtime mélange.
Recipe and video below. Note that you can now adjust serving sizes.
Roasted Radish and Asparagus with Sherry Vinaigrette
For the Sherry Vinaigrette
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 5 tbsp sherry vinegar to taste; see note for substitutions
- 1 tbsp minced shallot
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard to taste
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
For the Roasted Radish and Asparagus
- 8 stalks asparagus
- 5 large radishes, quartered if they're smaller, halve them, and if you have a really big one, cut it into six or eight pieces
- 2 sprigs thyme
- olive oil
- kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 400. Meanwhile, make the vinaigrette. In a mason jar with lid, add the olive oil. Shake vigorously until you see little bubbles form. Add the sherry vinegar, and shake again. Add the shallots, and shake again. Then the mustard, and shake again. Season with salt and pepper and give it another shake to make sure that it's combined. Set aside.
- On a quarter-sheet pan lined with parchment, add the asparagus and the radish. You can combine them if you wish, but I just lay them side by side (they look pretty that way). Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt, and toss to combine. Break the thyme sprigs in half and sprinkle over the asparagus and radish.
- Roast for 15-20 minutes, or until you can pierce the radish easily with a fork, but you still get resistance. You might need to rescue the asparagus before the radishes are done, but I usually don't.
- To serve, drizzle with the Sherry Vinaigrette.