Multi-colored Carrot and Green Radish Pickles

carrots and a green radish

The green one is the only radish, the rest are carrots.

Last week, I reported that I was feeling a little lackluster kitchen-wise and thoroughly tired of winter. Well, I’m happy to report that things are looking up and its all thanks to pickles. Quick pickled carrots and radishes, that is.

sliced

Recently, I was browsing the display of root vegetables at the Fair Food Farmstand, looking to see if there was anything that might tickle my canning fancy, when I spotted baskets of brightly colored carrots and vividly green radishes (I do believe they belong to the daikon family).

At $5 a pound, they were more expensive than my average pickle ingredients, but it had been so many months since I’d felt so immediately moved and energized by an ingredient that I was more than willing to pay up.

salted

Once home with my pricey roots, I washed them well, sliced them thinly on a mandoline, and tossed them with a little sea salt and granulated sugar. This helps draw out some of the water and make room for the vinegar to take up residence. Then I let them sit for about an hour, until the slices looked damp and seemed quite pliable.

into the brine

After a quick rinse and a vigorous shake, into a simple brine they went. My hope was to mimic the pickles that are so often served as garnish at Vietnamese restaurants, so I stayed simple with unseasoned rice wine vinegar, honey, water, and just a touch of salt (I know I started by salting the pickles, but by the time the carrot and radish slices hit the brine, most of that salt has been rinsed away. And unsalted pickles taste flat).

three pints

The pickles only stayed on the stove long enough to just heat through. Then I funneled them into jars and let them sit on the counter until they were cool enough for the fridge. They are both brightly flavored and just so darn pretty (though the purple carrots did bleed their color once they were in the jar and so over time, all those multi-colored roots have turned a near-uniform red).

crunchy fridge pickles

I gave one jar of these pickles away and have eaten most of the second jar tossed into salads of baby arugula and made into little stacks with slivers of cheddar cheese. It’s been fuel for plugging away on a cookbook and dreaming of warmer days.

Notes:

  • If you can’t find green daikon radish, you could easily use the more readily available white variety. If you can’t find that, sub in any radish that you can put your hands on. 
  • This is a refrigerator pickle because it tastes best that way. While you could process it in a water bath canner, the texture won’t be as good.

Multi-colored Carrot and Green Radish Pickles

Yield: 3 pints

Ingredients

  • 1 pound multi-colored carrots
  • 1 pound green radish (daikon or conventional red radishes will also work)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups unseasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Wash carrots and radishes well and pat dry.
  2. Using a mandoline, thinly slice the vegetables into rounds of uniform thickness.
  3. Sprinkle slices with 1 teaspoon salt and 2 teaspoons granulated sugar. Toss to combine and let sit in a cool place for one hour.
  4. When the time is up, pour vegetable slices into a colander and rinse under cold water. Set aside.
  5. In a medium saucepan, combine rice wine vinegar, water, honey, and salt. Bring to a boil.
  6. Once the brine boils, add veg. Stir and cook just until the brine returns to a simmer.
  7. Funnel pickles into prepared jars and apply lids. Let cool.
  8. When pickles are at room temperature, place in the fridge. Let them sit for at least 24 hours before eating.
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25 Responses to Multi-colored Carrot and Green Radish Pickles

  1. 1
    Natalie says:

    The colors are so vibrant! They look beautiful in the jars. We’ve been eating lots of our purple, orange and white carrots from our garden. Delicious!

  2. 2

    Beautiful time to try it

  3. 3
    Savanarola says:

    Gosh, those were so beautiful all chopped up together! And it sounds yummy. . . . might have to give it a go. I’ll have radishes of my own to work with in a couple of weeks! When I get back from traveling, I’m making a big batch of a Mexican carrot pickle I’m addicted to. So bright and orange on a cold day, and spicy enough to warm up with.

  4. 4
    kristen says:

    Meant to tell you: these were excellent julienned on top of chicken nachos. Added a much-needed breath of pickled air to my long week! Thanks again.

  5. 5
    Stacy says:

    Beautiful!
    Is the long green one the only radish, and the other 4 carrots? I want to grow some of these colors :)

  6. 6
    Sande says:

    wow! Love the colors but I am not sure which is carrot and which is radish, can you show a pic w/them labeled for me (us) please? These sound wonderful, thank you, must give them a try.

  7. 7
    Barbara says:

    Veggies canned in the usual way are so much prettier than the way I’m “canning” these days. My dehydrator is going full blast most of the time, and even though all the food looks different, colors are preserved and deepen for most things, but veggies become little wrinkled nuggets. I am able to store so much more in a jar this way, however. Two 1 lb. bags of sliced, dehydrated carrots fit into a pint jar. Soon I’ll begin to take bits of several jars to make whole meals in a jar. Hurricane season is not far away, you see. One of the most favorite things I’ve dehydrated is spaetzle! The next thing I’m trying is your quinoa coconut granola!

    • 7.1
      Ginny says:

      I agree, the pickles are beautiful!
      And Barbara, I hear you about getting ready for hurricane season. I’ve been canning and dehydrating lots of different things, with still more to do.
      Do you honestly dehydrate homemade spaetzle?? Sorry, this is OT, but I’d love to know how you do that. My boys are crazy about the stuff.

  8. 8
    Tia Stockton says:

    Wow! So beautiful, and it sounds delish!

  9. 9
    Monique says:

    The mere sight of this recipe set my tastebuds a-tingling! I’ve never seen such beautiful root vegetables. I doubt our local farmer’s market would have anything like this yet (it’s still hardcore winter where I live), but I am going to be making these as soon as possible. Oh yes. Thank you for sharing this!

    One question: how long can refrigerator pickles last in the fridge?

    • 9.1
      Marisa says:

      They last indefinitely long, provided that that vegetables are fully submerged in the brine. I’ve eaten fridge pickles in the past that were at least 9 months old and they were just fine.

  10. 10
    Lynne says:

    So pretty, and they look fantastic! I love the little pickled veggies I get at the local Vietnamese and Korean places. :D

  11. 11
    lisa says:

    Those are gorgeous! Why do I always forget I own a mandoline slicer?!

  12. 12

    Very pretty roots! I’ll bet that thin slicing really does the trick for taking up flavor.

  13. 13
    Eileen says:

    Wow, these look so exciting! I’ve never even seen a radish like that before–and we have a serious & excellent farmer’s market where such a thing should absolutely pop up. Must keep an eye out–and in the meantime, daikon might happen. :)

  14. 14
    Hannah says:

    How are you going to serve/eat these? They are so incredibly beautiful!

  15. 15
    Cyn says:

    So pretty! I grabbed the last bunch of colorful root veggies from my CSA in the late fall and pickled them, as well. But your mandoline cuts put my chunky roots to shame. I will now rationalize the purchase of a mandoline.

  16. 16
    Jennifer says:

    I love the striations on that green diakon – so pretty!
    What type or brand of mandoline do you have? There’s no way my junky mandoline would give me such neat, thin slices.

  17. 17
    Tracy says:

    These are gorgeous, Marisa! And, when do we get to find out more about your next cookbook?? :-)

  18. 18
    Carole says:

    Gorgeous. Wonderful. Way cool. Yes, can’t wait to prepare a batch of these and wow my family and friends. Thanks so much for a great article.

  19. 19
    Trish B says:

    Those are gorgeous. I’ve wanted to try a recipe for those kind of pickles. I’d bet they’d be delicious on banh mi.

  20. 20

    Only you could find inspiration after 5 long months of winter. These are so creative and colorful. I just sighed looking at the photos. Beautiful!

  21. 21

    […] in March, I cooked up a batch of quick pickled carrots and daikon radish. I thought they were long since gone, but while digging through the fridge in the hopes of making […]

  22. 22
    Linda says:

    I love these jars of food and am trying to find a place to purchase some for a display in a new Farm to table restaurant. Can anyone suggest where I might purchase some or who would make them. I am looking for extra large jars. Thx, Linda

  23. 23
    lsb says:

    I want to make picked radishes to send to a friend.
    Once these are made, do they have to go in the fridge right away or could they stand to be mailed and put into the fridge upon arrival, say 4 days later?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Preserves in Action: Pickled Carrots and Daikon in a Sandwich | Food in Jars - July 4, 2013

    […] in March, I cooked up a batch of quick pickled carrots and daikon radish. I thought they were long since gone, but while digging through the fridge in the hopes of making […]

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