I recently read Molly Wizenberg’s (author of Orangette) “A Homemade Life,” which is broken up into chapters followed by a corresponding recipe. Honestly, many of the recipes didn’t entice me at first glance necessarily, but after reading Molly’s narrative it’s nearly impossible to resist making them. That is good food writing.
She has a particular chapter about tearing into baguette with a lover and slathering it with butter before topping it with radishes and a sprinkle of salt. I thought, I want to to share a fresh baguette with a lover. So I did.
Tommy and I cursed the Washington rain and threw a picnic blanket down in the middle of my living room. Soon the square of floor space in my tiny apartment was covered with charcuterie, cake, radishes and a brie-like cheese Tommy found in the miscellaneous cheese basket at our co-op.
There really isn’t a recipe for this French combo. The most important part is the quality of ingredients. Indulge in a fresh baked baguette from a local bakery, bright radishes and good-quality unsalted butter, preferably cold.
Tear through a baguette and spread with butter. Sprinkle the butter with fleur de sel or other coarse salt. Layer thinly sliced radishes on top. I preferred the salt on top of the butter instead of atop the radish so I could hold the baguette with full force without getting salt all over my fingers.
If you’re serving this to other people and want to prearrange it, slice the baguette 1/3 inch thick and do the same as above. You can also lightly toast the pieces in the oven at 350 degrees first.