Daikon Radish, also known as kaiware, have tall, silky crisp white stems and crisp green leaves. They are fast growing with a spicy, hot flavour which is perfect for use fresh in salads or sandwiches or add to soups, sushi rolls or stir fry. Grown to micro leaf stage, they are lovely as a garnish and wonderful mixed with Alfalfa.
Radish is a member of the mustard family, and probably originated in Eurasia, it is one of the first recorded cultivated vegetables and dates back to earliest historical times. Its name comes from the Latin word "radix" which means "a root".
They are high in vitamin C and potassium and a good source of Vitamins A, B, C, E, and K and minerals: calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, zinc as well as trace minerals, carotene, chlorophyll, amino acids and protein.
How to grow Sprouting Seeds:
Seeds are just plants waiting to happen; dry they are in a dormant state and only need water and light to become a living entity. Seeds sprout fastest in a warm light airy place, out of direct sunlight, with an ambient temperature of 18 to 22°C (65-72°F), which is pretty much the condition of most kitchens. All you need is a large glass jar with a screw top lid and water.
You can use a purpose made sprouter, there are many inexpensive types available, or you can make your own by piercing the lid of a wide mouth jar to make drainage holes or securing a square of muslin over the top of the jar with an elastic band. Many of the sprouts can simply be grown on cotton wool or kitchen towel, remember when you were a child - one egg box, filled with cotton wool and - bingo! - mustard and cress is yours within ten days.
Sprouting the Seeds:
Put seeds into a bowl or into your sprouter. Add 2 to 3 times as much cool (16°C/60°F) water. Mix seeds up to assure even water contact and soak for 6-12 hours.
Empty the seeds into your sprouter (if necessary) and drain off the soak water, then rinse again and drain thoroughly.
Set your sprouter anywhere out of direct sunlight and at room temperature (21°C/70°F is optimal) between rinses. Rinse and drain again every 8 to 12 hours for 3 days.
Note: Brassicas tend to float. Try to sink those that do by knocking them down with your fingers. Most of those floating seeds will sink during the hours they are soaking.
On the fourth day if you've been keeping them away from light, move them into some light. Avoid direct sun as it can cook your sprouts. Indirect sunlight is best, but you will be amazed at how little light sprouts require to green up.
Continue to rinse and drain every 8 to 12 hours.
This is where your sprouts do their growing. Your sprouts will be done during day 5 or 6.The majority will have open leaves which will be green if you exposed them to light.
These wonderful little Brassica plants have a unique root structure. Brassicas will show microscopic roots starting around day 3. They are called root hairs and are most visible just before rinsing when the sprouts are at their driest. When you rinse the root hairs will collapse back against the main root. Many people make the mistake of thinking these root hairs are mold, but they are not
Before your final Rinse remove the seed hulls. Brassica sprout hulls are quite large (relative to the seed and sprout) and they hold a lot of water (which can dramatically lessen the shelf life of your sprouts), so we remove them
Transfer the sprouts to a big (at least 3 to 4 times the volume of your sprouter) pot or bowl, fill with cool water, loosen the sprout mass and agitate with your hand. Skim the hulls off the surface. Return the sprouts to your sprouter for their rinse and drain. Your sprouts are done 8 to 12 hours after your final rinse.
After the de-hulling and the final rinse, drain very thoroughly and let the sprouts dry a little. If we minimize the surface moisture of the sprouts they store much better in refrigeration, so either let them sit for 8 to 12 hours or use a salad spinner to dry the sprouts after their final rinse and skip the final 8 to12 hour wait, instead going directly to refrigeration.
Transfer the sprout crop to a plastic bag or the sealed container of your choice.
You cannot grow radish sprouts vertically using a tray sprouter. It is essential that you keep Brassica sprouts from clumping together. Brassica sprouts will mat together forming a dense bluish root mass which not only is unattractive but shortens the shelf life of the finished sprouts. So mix ‘em up! When water isn't enough, break the clump of sprouts up using a fork or your fingers. You should never be afraid of touching your sprouts. They are much stronger then they appear - just be reasonably gentle.
|Packet Size||50 grams|
|Average Seed Count||3,000 Seeds|
|Common Name||Kaiware, Microleaf or Miniveg|
|Time to Harvest||Seed to Sprout: 3 to 6 days.|
|Notes||Seed Shelf Life at 21°C (70°F): 4 to 5 years.
Sprout Shelf Life: 2 to 6 weeks