Tuesday, April 5, 2016

First Pickle of the Season

With such a nice growing season around here, I'm always really sad when the real cold comes and not much can grow.  If we can avoid frost, I can get a lot of veggies right into November.  But, once the frost comes, the only thing that can hang on outside is carrots and some onions.

In the greenhouse, I can get chard and beets to go all year and sometimes, I can get broccoli too, if I start it early enough in the fall.

Last fall, I started a bunch of carrots in the greenhouse and out in the ground early enough that they got a good start before the frost.  It was really fun to go through my garden a few weeks ago and pull out carrots that had wintered over and most were big enough to eat.  Those that weren't went right to Jackson, so nothing was lost.

A month or so ago, I threw some radish seeds into a pot in the greenhouse but I didn't put it on the heat mat.  They sprouted and grew, more or less, so this weekend, I pulled them out.  Two were really big, and all had crazy leaves, but the rest were pretty skinny.

Radishes are the first new thing that I get to grow every spring and it's so great to go out and see new growth and something ready so quickly.  They usually take about 25 days to reach maturity.

Something that grows so fast and look so pretty (especially when wet) should taste like candy, many of you probably know that radishes are fairly unpleasant.  You can cook them until they are translucent and they are very mild, kind of like when you cook down onions.  You can also eat the leaves.  And, though they are sharp, I like to put a little in a salad sometimes.

Last year, I discovered a radish pickling recipe that smells awful but tastes so good!  So, I found a few more carrots in the greenhouse, threw in a red onion (I didn't use all of those in the picture), and all of the radishes I had so far and this is what it looks like!

It tastes so great but smells really gross.  The recipe is here, but I didn't drain it and put in oil or lime juice and it was just as tasty without the added oil.  This way, if there's any left over after our pulled pork sandwiches, I will put it in a jar with a tight lid and keep it in the refrigerator and there won't be any oil clumps.

Once we discovered that we really like this on pulled pork and also hot dogs, we were sad that I hadn't made more, so this year, I'm planning to make a lot more and keep it in the fridge.  I'm not sure what else I'd put it on but I have thrown some in a salad instead of dressing, for a little kick.  I don't know about canning it and leaving it in the cabinet because this is not processed, so I get worried about bacteria.  With the vinegar in the cold refrigerator, they lasted a long time for us with no problems.

So, if you're itching to grow something that's quick and pretty, get some radish seeds and get to work!

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1 comment:

  1. We love eating radishes in salads, but I've never heard of pickling them before. Maybe I'll have to try :) Thank you for sharing at Merry Monday!!


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