I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been making a whole lot of things that aren’t kimchi lately. It’s looming in the back of my mind like air bubbles in water, and it will eventually surface–that is, the guilt of not having kimchi in my fridge. And I will make that trip to Sunnyvale to gather all my kimchi ingredients from the Korean grocery store, and I will dedicate a few days and a vast amount of floor and counter space(you will witness first hand what I’m talking about when I post my kimchi recipe) to that ancient fermentation process. But in the meantime, I’ve stumbled across these gems at Sigona’s in Redwood City: red, purple, white, and black radishes. I will make a quick pickle of them.
Pickling is the cousin to fermenting(my rationalizing knows no bounds, and kimchi procrastinating continues).
This pickling recipe is one my mother and grandmother used to pickle daikon to serve on top of cold buckwheat noodles. White vinegar creates a tart pickle, with the purpose to complement either a fatty or mellow dish. I’m reserving them to eat with braised pork belly. (Recipe for pork belly will be in the next post. I’m not normally a tease, but kids are attacking each other with cereal as I write this, and an outdoor excursion may be necessary to burn off their energy. Braised pork belly will have to wait. And yes, they eat cereal all the time.)
Quick pickling starts with a brine that is boiled, and then poured over the vegetable.
In a day or so, these pickles will be ready. There’s a strong possibility that you may eat all of them at once, or when you discover how great the juice is in martinis, you might just drain the jar dry before finishing the pickles. It’s five o’clock somewhere:
Adapted from The Really Good Pickle Martini recipe from fiveoclockcocktails.com. (2 ounces Gordon’s Dry Gin, 1/4 ounce Martini & Rossi dry vermouth, 1/4 ounce pickled radish juice) Pour all the ingredients into an ice-filled glass. Stir with a spoon for about a minute. Strain into a chilled martini glass.
- 8-10 radishes to make 2 pints
- 1/2 c sugar
- 1 c white vinegar(rice wine vinegar can be substituted for a milder pickle)
- 1 c water
- 1 1/2 tbs salt
- Slice radishes into bite sizes(circles for smaller ones, and semi circles for larger ones) that are relatively the same thickness.
- Place sliced radishes into glass containers like mason jars. (Do not use plastic containers.)
- Bring sugar, vinegar, water, and salt to a boil in a small saucepan.
- Pour the hot liquid into the jars and completely submerge the radishes.
- If using a mason jar, cover immediately with lid. Otherwise, wait for liquid to cool down before covering. After cooling down, place in fridge. Pickles are ready in a day or two.