Diary of a Foodie

Pickled Turnips

Diary of a Foodie: Season Two: North Carolina

Makes1 quart
  • Active Time:20 min
  • Start to Finish:1 day (includes time for flavors to develop)
January 2008
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 small (1- to 1 1/2-inch-long) fresh hot red chiles, split lengthwise in half
  • 1/4 cup julienned peeled ginger (about 1 oz)
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 bunches baby Japanese turnips, such as hakurei, or 2 bunches radishes (about 1 lb)
  • Bring water, vinegar, sugar, and 2 tablespoons salt to a boil in a 3-quart nonreactive saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Cool, then stir in chiles, ginger, and garlic.
  • Scrub turnips in cold water and trim, leaving 1/2 inch of stems attached. If any are ping-pong-ball size or larger, halve or quarter. Pack turnips into glass jars or a glass bowl and pour in cooled pickling liquid, dividing chiles, ginger, and garlic among jars. Chill, covered, 1 day for flavors to develop.
Cooks' Note: Pickled turnips keep, chilled, up to 1 week. Color may fade if using radishes; vegetables will wrinkle after 2 days.
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