Sunday, August 21, 2011

Japanese-ish Radish Pickles

I have a confession to make. I don't actually like radishes. It's not as though there is anything wrong with them, exactly, it's just they have never ingratiated themselves to me. The roots are too crunchy, the leaves too prickly. They grow too quickly in the garden, often going to seed before you get a chance to pick them.

But they are very pretty, and I would love to love them.

I decided to try a Japanese pickle recipe from Just Bento. It took very little time to prepare a weeks worth of pickled radish. Plucking a few pieces out of a jar is far more convenient than going down to the garden, picking, washing, cutting...&c. radishes each day.

It tastes good, but I bet it would have tasted even better if I had some Ume Vinegar and daikon. Here's what I did:

About 20 small radishes, fresh from the garden
1/2 cup rice vinegar
2 Tbs Honey

  • Prepare the radishes, cut the leaves and tips from the root. I'm keeping the leaves to make one of these two rice spice recipes: Spicy radish leaves Furikake or Radish leaves, bonito and shrimp furikake. Put in a ceramic or glass jar with a lid.
  • Mix the vinegars and honey together, poor over the radishes. You want the radishes to be covered by the pickle juice so if you don't have enough, see the original recipe for adjusting the amounts.
  • They are ready to eat the next day, and will keep well for a little over a week.

This recipe makes radishes quite acceptable to me. But I be some of you are wondering why bother? If I don't much like radishes, why eat them?

I want to eat vegetables that I usually shun because I feel it's important to get more variety in my diet. If I can eat more of what I grow and increase the number of different kinds of plants in my diet, then maybe I can acquire a greater range of nutrients from my food and spend less money on vitamins and supplements.

It's actually great fun trying different recipes. The best part is working with fresh from the garden produce. It's so colourful.

Now, if only I could find a way to like Kale.


Brooke said...

Might I recommend making kale chips? You shred it into smaller leaves, then sprinkle sea salt on and roast them for a bit, till crispy. They are super tasty, and don't get soggy at all!

Josiane said...

I've made pickled radishes last summer (following that recipe:, and I loved them! I really liked that they turned a pretty shade of pink all the way through. :)

As for kale, I've loved it since the first time I've tried it and in all of the ways I've tasted it so far, so I don't feel qualified to offer suggestions on how to make it likeable to someone who doesn't like it. I wish you good luck finding a way for you to enjoy it. I trust you'll be able to do it, just like you were able to find a way to start enjoying radishes.

sobliss said...

I have a similar relationship with radishes, and kale is not a favourite but recently I tried kale chips, which were good. Radishes do make for good photos though don't they?