perfect pickled radishes is a matter of personal taste. i like mine slightly sweet, slightly tangy, slightly spicy, and oh yeah, they need to have a crunch. i started mucking about the kitchen the other day, and quickly threw together a pickling brine with the sichuan peppercorns i had hauled back from my trip to chengdu. i poured the brine over some radishes, and lo and behold, a few days later, hubs and i found ourselves crunching on some seriously delicious radishes.
i then spent the next two weekends making sure that i could reproduce the recipe. i think i’ve got it down to a science now, or at least an easy to repeat routine. in my latest batch, i tossed in some sliced carrots as well to add some color.
i’m finding that the radishes are awesomely convenient and infinitely versatile . i’ll toss them into salads, place them on top of sandwiches, or use them as a condiment to go along with some cold sesame noodles. . .
STS Pickled Radishes
(enough to fill a 1.5L Fido Jar)
||2 ¼ lbs (~1 kilo); I use daikon radishes because they are easiest to slice. Red radishes can be used as well – a neat thing happens with red radishes. After a few days of pickling, the red skin color transfers from the radish to the brine, i.e. the brine becomes reddish and the radish is left white).NB: if you want some color, sliced carrots can be tossed in as well, but i’d keep the proportion sub 20%.
||3-4 cloves, peeled and smashed
||About 1 inch cube, peeled and sliced
|Sichuanese Red Peppercorns
|Dried Red Chili Peppers
||1 ½ cups
- Wash, peel and slice radishes about 1/8″ thick. It’s easiest to use a japanese benriner or mandolin.
- Toss sliced radishes in a large prep bowl with garlic, ginger, sugar, peppercorns and chilis.
- Transfer to Fido jar and pour vinegars, mirin and sake over.
- Clamp jar close and store in refrigerator.
- Radishes will be ready to eat in 2-3 days.
Posted in China, From the Garden
Tagged Chengdu, daikon radish, fido jars, pickled carrots, pickled radishes, quick pickle, rice vinegar, sichuan peppercorn, sweet and spicy pickled radishes, tangy pickled radishes
there’s been a strawberry glut going on, such that stores and street vendors (even in manhattan) seem to be almost giving them away. i bought too many the other day, couldn’t finish them before traveling overseas, and decided to freeze them for another use. as i was cleaning out my freezer this weekend, i discovered that i had built up a pretty mighty stash of frozen raspberries, blackberries and blueberries in addition to the latest strawberry addition. there was really only one thing to do: make jam! and if i’m going to make jam, i might as well brew up a flavour that i really like and can’t find in stores — hence the earl grey, an ingredient which really seems to enhance to aromatic properties of all sweet goods.
seeing the jam delightfully nestled in a fido clamp jar, i thought it only made sense to display the unctuous delight on a piece from my liberty print collection. yay liberty! yay fido! yay jam!
Earl Grey Mixed Berry Jam
(makes ~1 quart)
||900g or ~2 lbs
||600g (using ¾ the amount of sugar to fruit is usually a good rule of thumb to preserve the fruits; however, i like my jam less sweet and can usually get away with using 2/3rds)
||Juice of 1 lemon
|Earl Grey Loose Tea Leaves
||2 tbsp + 1 tbsp
- Brew a very strong cup of earl grey tea using 2 tbsp and 1 cup of hot water, and set aside. I let my tea leaves steep in the hot water for 1 hour before straining out the tea leaves.
- Pour berries, sugar and lemon juice into a medium-sized bowl and combine with a wooden spatula. Allow the mixture to macerate overnight in the refrigerator.
- Place a clean plate in the freezer.
- The next day, pour the berry mixture, brewed earl grey tea and 1 tbsp of dry tea leaves into a clean wide bottomed pot. I usually use my 5 quart dutch oven or my copper lined all-clad stock pot.
- Allow the mixture to simmer over medium-high heat, stirring intermittently.
- When the liquid has reduced to half and the bubbles and foam begin to subside, stir more regularly and begin testing for “done-ness.” To do so, take your clean plat out of the freezer, put a small amount of jam on the plate. Return it to the freezer for 1 minute. Take your finger, and push on the jam slightly. If it is done, you will see wrinkles appear on the jam. If it’s not done, it will be liquid and run all over.
- Pour into a clean jar and close the lid. (Sealing in hot jam actually creates an airtight seal. I get a popping sound when I re-open it later on). When cool, store in refrigerator. (I’ve kept my jam in good condition in the fridge for up to 1 year. For longer shelf-stable storage, refer to proper jamming techniques.)