Radishes are easy to grow and very fast. I really must remember to do succession planting on such things – a few plants every week, so there are always fresh ones. But for now, we have a surfeit of hot little red roots, so before the worms get in (which happens if they’re left in the garden after becoming ripe) something must be done. That something is a “quick” (non-fermented) pickling:
Makes about one pint
1 1/2 cups sliced radishes
10 fl oz vinegar
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons sugar (optional, or use honey, stevia, etc.)
1 small onion
First, obviously, we need to pick some fresh, organic radishes, fertilized with last year’s kitchen compost and a bit of composted horse manure:
The greens can go into a salad (they’re a little bitter to be the whole salad, but a nice addition), or into the goats, if you’re so equipped.
Then we slice up the radishes along with an onion:
Bring vinegar (we used a mix of brown rice and apple cider vinegars), peppercorns, salt, and sugar to a simmer to get everything nicely dissolved, then cool it off so you don’t blow up your canning jar:
Put the radishes and onions into the jar, and pour the cooled vinegar mixture over them:
Refrigerate overnight, and the next day you will have delicious pickled radishes floating in a red juice. The smell when you open it is pungent, but the radishes themselves are crunchy and delicious, their sharp flavor mellowed.
These will last at least a week in the refrigerator. With a stronger solution, they might last longer, but really what we need to do is some proper fermentation pickling…soon!