Green Tartine, or, Radish Top Toast

I spent a very nice year in Denmark once upon a time. (Yes, I can still remember how to say about two things in Danish.) The country has many charming aspects, one of which is the fine tradition of making a meal out of good things piled on top of bread.

Recently, a similar movement seems to be gaining steam here in the U.S. as well, except that we toast our bread first. I think of the evolution this way: bruschetta (1980’s), crostini (1990’s), toasts (aughts), tartines (isn’t that what we call them now?). Or maybe there’s some other difference, I don’t know. Anyway, here’s a nice way to get away with eating melty cheese on toast for dinner. My friend Daisy at Coolcookstyle made it up by substituting radish greens for nettles in a Nigel Slater rarebit recipe, and I say it was a wise decision. You can swap the greens, swap the cheese, or vary the mustard, of course: the only two essential ingredients are bread and something delicious to put on top of it. Green Tartine: Saute the leaves from one bunch of radishes with a pinch of salt. Set aside to drain, then chop finely. Mix chopped greens with 2 Tb. crème fraiche, ½ c. grated aged cheddar, a spoonful of grainy mustard and a few grinds of fresh pepper. Heap onto bread (I used baguette slices) and broil, watching closely, until lightly browned. We had these for dinner with a garden salad.


32 thoughts on “Green Tartine, or, Radish Top Toast

    1. emmycooks Post author

      They’re great! I know I’m late in replying to these comments but hopefully this will bring these back up your list for your sake. :)

  1. Somer

    who knew you could use radish tops? I’m clueless sometimes, though I do use beet and turnip greens ;)

      1. emmycooks Post author

        I’m going to have to post my radish top soup recipe soon. To be followed later in the summer by my favorite carrot top soup.

      1. Wild Cookery!

        Strangely enough I’ve never found nettles here. Nettles nerf when cooked so they don’t sting. Harvesting them can be a bit of fun though! :)

  2. baconbiscuit212

    Yummy in my tummy!

    I love your evolution of things piled on bread. That sounds about right. You can’t beat melty, cheesy things piled on bread though.

    That is so cool that you spent a year in Denmark. I bet it was an amazing experience filled with Vikings and smorrebrod! Did you have a favorite?

    Toast topping . . . not Viking . . . although you can have a favorite Viking too ;-)

    And thanks for the shout-out! Looks like it turned out great, Emmy!

    1. emmycooks Post author

      My favorites smorrebrod combos were (1) a farmers-cheese-type spread with radishes and chives on brown bread and (2) butter and thin wafers of chocolate on white bread. Not necessarily together. :)

  3. hannah

    Was just discussing with Kyle the fact that a restaurant in town is now serving tartines … that look exactly like what they used to call bruschetta. Apparently they missed a few decades though :) We love eating the radish greens in salads, but this looks like a must-try. Tartines here are usually toast with avocado smashed on top and some salt and sometimes a poached egg, but that cheese looks really good …. Have you seen the blog 17bites? She had a “toast” recipe recently, with caramelized onions, that is sort of in a similar vein … here is a link:

    1. emmycooks Post author

      Hey, I had your avocado-and-salt-tartine for breakfast this morning! That is one of my staples when there is a ripe avocado in the house. And thank you for the introduction to 17bites!

  4. tinykitchenstories

    I wish I’d seen this before I went to a Memorial Day party last weekend! But my goat cheese, home made pesto and tomato crostinis went over well. Maybe I’ll just make these for myself. ;)

    1. emmycooks Post author

      I actually like making something like this for myself! It makes me feel so elegant not to be just eating over the sink when I’m alone. :)

  5. hännah

    Oh my gosh, I’m making this tonight. I just bought some radishes and have been trying to decide how I want to use the tops (they’re not my favorite greens, so I have to “dress them up” a little). This looks perfect.

    I’m also a big fan of the danish smørrebrød (that’s my one and only danish word!) technique. Who needs 2 slices of bread when you can just pile all the good stuff on one?

    1. emmycooks Post author

      This is a very compelling way to hide radish greens, I’d say. Completely smothering anything in cheese is a pretty effective disguise. :)

  6. musingmar

    These are genius! I’ve never thought about eating the radish greens before. There’s less and less going into the composter!

  7. Robin

    Mmmm…with the creme fresh and aged cheddar, that just might work with my kids. (All else fails, my husband and I will have LOTS of it! Really, it’s win-win as I see it.)


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