Diakon - My love hate relationship with a root

Last week I took a chance and packed some diakon radish in a dish!The Garden Hand Roll has shredded carrots, cabbage, cucumbers, avocado, and diakon.

Diakon is a radish with edible, turnip greens like top. It is a common vegetable in many Asian dishes. In Macrobiotics, diakon is used as a remedy for many conditions. It is known as the "weight loss" radish. But, before you get to excited note that like all food based remedies it is part of a holistic diet and whole lifestyle.

Here are some ways it is used:

Dried -Dried shreds are made into a tea and used as a Sitz bath for dissolving fat around the uterine area. The tea can also be drank for help remove fatty deposits in the intestines. (fresh, new tea! Not your used booty tea...)

Pickled - Used to dissolve 'old', stuck fats in the body.

Fresh - Can be cooked in a variety of ways to maintain good digestion of fat.

Grated - Seen in traditional Japanese restaurants served along side of tempura to help digest the oil.

I have personally used lightly steamed diakon to help drain fluid retention. In my opinion, it can have a strong, pungent flavor and smell. I do recommend it for use in your diet for a couple reasons. One, it does seem to help digest fat and helps you eliminate fluids. Two, it helps you train your palate. Our American diet does not often show case the bitter and pungent flavors.

You can find it at most health food stores and at the farmer's market.

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