An easy way to prepare seasonal radishes from the market or garden! Tart, sweet and salty with great crunch, these quick pickled radishes are an easy affair. The pickling process needs a minimum of 8 hours, but prep is quick and they make a great condiment for sandwiches or salads. Because these are not canned or heat processed, they must stay refrigerated and should be consumed within 1-2 weeks.
Spring is Radish Season
Radishes have been exploding from the garden; they are a wonderful and easy crop to sow and are readily available locally this time of year.
Radishes are a root vegetable in the Brassica family of plants (cabbages, cruciferous, mustards). Their taste is unmistakable, and depending on the variety, their taste (heat), colour and shape will vary.
Some varieties, like these French Breakfasts radishes make for great snacking; they're not too hot, and have a perfect crunch to them. But, they can also make for excellent pickles.
What is Quick Pickling?
Quick pickling veggies is an easy affair. There's no lengthy fermentation period or heat processing involved. Unlike lacto-fermented pickles, quick pickles are made with vinegar to create an acidic preserving environment. It's the acidic brine that acts to preserve your food from spoilage.
Overall, this recipe for quick pickled radishes is simple to prepare and will enhance your salads or sandwiches with a great tangy crunch. They're also great on their own.
What you'll need
For this recipe, you'll need several supplies and a few basic ingredients as follows:
- 3-250ml sterilized mason jars, lids and rings
- Sterilized knife and cutting board
- Small saucepan and spoon
The ingredients are:
- Fresh french breakfast radishes
- Black peppercorns
- White pickling vinegar (7% acetic acid)
- Filtered water
- Organic cane sugar
- Kosher salt
- Optional: garlic cloves and mustard seeds
Tips for making great Quick Pickles
With any pickle recipe, you want to choose produce that is fresh, clean, and blemish free- great pickles start with the best ingredients.
Choose radishes that are firm, bright red (if using french breakfasts), and are about 1" in diameter with no discoloration or dark spots on them.
For best flavour, the radishes should be sliced about ⅛” or 1/16” thick. The thinner the radishes, the quicker they will take on the flavour of the brine.
It's also very important to note that because these are quick pickles, and not heat processed pickles, they are not shelf stable- they must stay refrigerated. In other words, don't store these on a shelf, a counter top, or in your pantry.
Some Safety Notes
If you’re new to the science of pickling, I recommend reading up on the topic from an expert. While quick pickles are generally safe to make and enjoy, it's important to know best practices for avoiding contamination and when a preserve may not be safe to eat.
Make sure your jars, lids, and any other tools or equipment you'll be using are very clean and sanitized (cutting boards, knives, etc).
Also it's important that the radish slices stay submerged in the brine in order to stay pickled; any pieces that are not submerged may develop mold or bacterial growth.
How long does this recipe last in the fridge?
Quick pickled radishes are best eaten within 1-2 weeks and sometimes longer. I have safely consumed these up to 1 month later. However, if you note any mold, fizzy bubbles, slime, or otherwise weird things happening, discard the recipe and don't eat it!
Quick pickles are generally considered very safe to eat, however, use your best judgement and when in doubt, discard.
More Recipes to Make
Here are a few other recipes featuring radishes, pickles or great sandwiches to add these quick pickled radishes to!
Easy Quick Pickled Radishes
An easy way to prepare seasonal radishes from the local market or your own garden. Tart, sweet and salty with great crunch, these quick pickled radishes are easy to make. The pickling process needs a minimum of 8 hours, but prep is quick and they make a great addition to sandwiches or salads! Because these are not canned or heat processed, these MUST to be stored in the fridge. Makes 3 250ml jars
- 350 grams (~3 cups) Radishes well washed, stem and leaves removed
- 1 TBSP peppercorns
- 2 cups white pickling vinegar 7% acetic acid
- ½ cup filtered water
- ⅓ cup organic cane sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 garlic cloves peeled
- 2 tsp mustard seed
Using hot soapy water, carefully clean and dry the jars, lids and rings. Make sure your knive and cutting board and any other equipment are also thoroughly cleaned. To each jar, add a sprinkle of peppercorns.
Slice the radishes ~1/16" thick and tightly pack them into the jars along with any optional ingredients you choose. The radishes should be packed tight enough that they won't float once brine is added.
In a medium pot, bring the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt to a boil and stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Using a canning funnel, carefully pour the brine into each jar until just covering the radishes, leaving a ½" of headspace. The radishes should all be immersed in brine.
Put on the lid and screw on the rings. Let the jars cool then place them in the fridge for minimum 8 hours before serving, preferably overnight.
Again, because these are quick pickles, they must stay refrigerated. These are best eaten within 1-2 weeks, however, I have safely consumed these up to a month later. If you observe any mold, fizzing, bubbles, slime, or other signs of spoilage, discard the pickles and do not eat them. Quick pickles are generally considered quite safe to eat, however, use your best judgement and when in doubt, discard.