Saturday, July 05, 2008

Radish Pickles

Research for pickled radishes showed two clear directions -- Japanese style pickled in rice vinegar with a bit of sugar and salt, and a more traditional country style pickle with coriander, mustard seed, and peppercorns. I chose the latter, and adpated a Bread and Butter Radish Pickle recipe from Notes all say pickling is a great way to tone down radishes that are too "hot" or peppery while keeping them crisp. Plus, I added a couple of sweet but hot onions from the garden. Here's the recipe with my changes:

Bread and Butter Pickled Radishes

1 bunch radishes (about 13-16 depending on the size)
1 cup red wine vinegar
1 small onion (or two garden onions) cut into wedges
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 heaping tablespoon kosher salt
1 tsp yellow or brown mustard seed
1 tsp whole coriander seed

Plus, 1/2 tsp or so of any of the following -- whole black peppercorns, juniper berries, allspice berries, bay leaf, etc. (I almost tried star anise but thought it might be a bit much.)

Combine all brine ingredients (but not the radishes or onion) and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes.

While the brine is coming up, chop radishes into thin slices and quarter onions. Put radishes and onion in a heatproof bowl.

Pour brine over vegetables and ensure it covers everything. Let stand for 20 minutes. Then cover and refrigerate or transfer radishes/onions to smaller jars, then top off with brine. Refrigerate all of it -- like you would refrigerator pickles. Use on salads, sandwiches, etc. Makes 2-3 cups.

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