PRESSED DAIKON AND RED RADISH SALAD

Pressed salads are easy to prepare but are always made ahead of time. The longer they sit the more time beneficial enzymes have to grow. This radish salad will take on a fabulous pinkish hue after it is pressed for several hours. The pressing technique is used to make a quick pickle dish that gives us the freshness of raw salad, yet the vegetables are processed just enough with salt or vinegar to break down the tough outer cellulose layer that can make raw vegetables so difficult to digest. Pressing also eliminates much of the excess liquids that can be make us feel too cold during the winter months. The secret to this dish is to slice the vegetables as thinly as possible.                                                                                                                               photo by larissa nicole

Daikon is very low in calories and rich in vitamin C. This wonderful root vegetable has also been shown to be effective as a diuretic and decongestant. As a diuretic, raw daikon promotes the discharge of excess water by the kidneys. Containing active enzymes that aid in digestion, especially of starchy foods, daikon is a wonderful salad for springtime.

INGREDIENTS

2 large daikon (white Japanese radish, looks like large carrot)
2-3 bunches red radish
2 tbsp sea salt
½ – ¾ cup fresh lemon juice

Cut daikon into matchsticks, and cut the red radishes into either full or ½ moon slices. Mix all ingredients together in salad press or in large ceramic bowl. The salad will decrease in size to a quarter of its original volume. Press in presser for several hours or all day on the counter but out of the sun. If you are using a bowl, cover salad with a plate that can sink down on top of ingredients and weight it with a jar of water, pot, rock, etc.

You may also substitute lemon juice and salt for about 1/3 cup umeboshi vinegar. Serve with any meal as a condiment

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