These quick and easy to make refrigerator-pickled radishes are ready to eat within 24 hours. They look especially attractive if you make them with a colorful variety such as watermelon radishes.
The advantage of quick pickling any vegetable is exactly what the name implies—they're ready to enjoy in about a day's time. You don't need a special jar or canning equipment. All you need is vinegar, water, sugar or honey, salt, spices, herbs and you're pretty much good to go.
You will need two glass pint jars with lids. Sterilizing isn't necessary but they should be impeccably clean.
The following technique also will work with baby cucumbers, carrots, cauliflower, or other vegetables you'd like to quick pickle.
- 2 pounds radishes (greens removed)
- 2 sprigs dill leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed, divided)
- 2 small cloves garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (divided)
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds (divided)
- Optional: 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (divided, or 1 small hot chili pepper)
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 1/3 cup white-wine vinegar (or cider vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 1/2 tablespoons salt (kosher, sea or other coarse non-iodized salts)
- Wash the radishes. Slice off the stem ends and tips. If using watermelon or daikon radishes, peel them. Leave cherry belle and other rosy-skinned radishes unpeeled.
- Slice the radishes into 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Smaller radishes simply can be cut in half and very small ones (less than 1 inch in diameter) can be left whole.
- Divide the dill, garlic, bay leaves, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and optional pepper flakes evenly between two glass pint jars. It is not necessary to sterilize the jars for this recipe but they should be scrupulously clean.
- Pack the radishes in with the spices.
- To make the brine, bring the water, vinegar, honey, and salt to boil in a small saucepan, stirring to dissolve the honey and salt. Skim off any foam and discard.
- Pour the hot brine over the radishes and seasonings. The radishes should be completely immersed in the brine.
- Tightly cover and store in the refrigerator. Pickled radishes will be ready to eat in 24 hours but will be even better if you can wait a week before serving them.
- Serve pickled radishes as a condiment or chop them and add to grain-based salads like tabbouleh.
Note: Pickled radishes will keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 months but are best if eaten within 3 months. They are still safe to eat after 3 months, but they will start to lose some crunchiness and the flavor will not be as good.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon curry powder to each jar for a curried pickle that is good served with Indian and Middle Eastern cuisines.
- Use just 1 pound of radishes and add 1 pound of peeled, sliced carrots for a colorfully mixed pickle.
- Instead of the garlic, use 1/2 a small onion, peeled and sliced, for a milder pickle.