Like most vegetables, radishes come in many types. In springtime, besides the ubiquitous round red ones there's such varieties as the pastel-colored “Easter Egg,” while in winter you might find turnip-shaped black radishes or Japanese daikon, the long white roots that can grow big as a bat.
For this recipe, look for Beauty Hearts, which are bright fuchsia-pink on the inside and have a sweet-and-slightly-peppery flavor. The color combination of red (radish), white (cream) and green (watercress) makes these rousing nibbles especially fitting for the holidays.
1. Generously butter the bread slices. (To be fancy, you can slice off the crusts first, but that’s not necessary.) Cover buttered surface with sliced radishes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Use a very sharp knife to cut them into squares, triangles or halves.
2. Whip the cream until medium-firm peaks form. (See Whip Tips for instructions, but do not add the vanilla or sugar.) Sprinkle horseradish to taste (go easy--you won’t need much, especially if it’s fresh) and a few drops of lemon juice over surface of whipped cream; fold in gently. Place dollops of horseradish cream over sandwiches. Top each with a tiny bundle of watercress sprigs. Transfer sandwiches to a fancy platter. Serve immediately or chill before serving.
Copyright by Terese Allen