While it’s wonderful to grow your own produce, I sometimes stress about the potential for waste as everything ripens/matures at the same time. It is at this point in time I start to plan what I am going to do with an entire box of tomatoes or thirty beetroots…I can’t stand food waste and either gift some to friends, or depending on what is it, I will make jam, chutney or pickle it. Suffice to say our fridge is overwhelming full of precariously balanced jars of pickled vegetables – from the radishes I harvested on the weekend to the cauliflower and carrot…this household has pickled veg for days.
Pickling is an old school art which most of us seem to have forgotten about – sure we all have a jar of sliced jalapenos or dill pickles in the fridge, but that’s about as far as our pickled veg supply source goes. Perhaps it’s that people aren’t sure what to do with pickled veg? Well, if I can use myself as an example, I like to have pickled veg as an accompaniment to dishes, here’s some examples:
- try adding pickled radishes to your next homemade hamburger/cheeseburger
- place a small amount of pickled cauliflower and carrots to a cheese board – they go great with a vintage cheddar
- pickled cabbage is just dying to jump on top of your next hotdog, and
- don’t forget to try sweet pickled cucumbers with some pork terrine and fresh baguette.
I’ll start with my radish recipe and add to the pickled vegetable collection – there’s so many ways to pickle, the list is as long as your imagination. The basics are consistent though – equal water to equal vinegar, salt, sugar and something for extra flavour.
If you have any great ideas – or favourite family recipes – shoot me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will test them for myself at home and blog some of my favourites.
Makes 1 medium sized jar.
10 – 12 radishes, finely slice using a mandolin (or carefully slice by hand)
1/2 cup room temperature water
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 tsp table salt
1 tsp white sugar
2 grinds of black pepper
1 peeled garlic clove
1 pinch of dried chili flakes
- Into a medium sized jar place the garlic clove, pepper, salt, sugar, chili flakes, vinegar and water, place the lid back on and shake gently to combine. The sugar and salt should dissolve.
- Start to layer the radishes into the jar in circles until the jar is full – pack them in tight. The pickling liquid should cover your radishes – if not, fill with extra equal quantities of water and vinegar.
- Store in the fridge. The radishes are ready after as little as twenty minutes, although the flavour will develop and intensify over time. The radishes will stay edible for around a month – although mine usually disappear after a week!
*Thanks to my Mum for sharing her basic pickling recipe with me (years ago now) and to Cookie & Kate for the idea to add chili flakes.