Fibre, over at 28 cooks, wrote about vegetable pickles. I bookmarked it and then let it slide (going back to drool on the picture now and then). And then Tea at Tea and Cookies wrote about her version of radish pickles and I thought I absolutely must make these. And then she posted about them again. What was I to do?
You may have had all kinds of pickles (and there is no limit to the variety in Indian pickles!) but, as far as I know, these are the best looking pickles. Ever. One look and you will not be able to keep yourselves from making them for very long.
Even that blog-her friend of mine who is on a diet plan 🙂 . This is no oil-based Indian pickle, but more like a salad just waiting in a jar.
I looked at the other links from the above blogs and then tweaked the basic recipe to suit the ingredients I had at hand. Without further ado, let me get to the recipe. The pictures sell the pickle! It sits in my fridge like a glowing ruby, getting deeper every day.
Mooli and Beet Pickle
1 mooli (diakon radish)
2 red onions
4 green chillies
1”x1” piece ginger
1 small bulb of garlic
2 ½ C white vinegar
1 ½ C water
1 T salt
1 T Celery salt
3 T sugar
2 t white mustard
2 t black mustard (or rai)
1 T black peppercorns
3-4 jars (I had enough prepared vegetables to fill three 18oz. jars)
Trim beets, and cook in boiling water for 3 min. Cool, peel, quarter and slice them. Trim and slice mooli (or red radishes). Slice onions into half-moons. Peel, slice, and julienne ginger. Peel and slice garlic cloves. Peel and cut carrots into 1-2” lengths and quarter. Pack the vegetables, including the green chillies, into clean jars.
Combine the vinegar and water in a non-reactive pan. Add the salts, sugar and the spices and boil for 4 min. Pour the hot liquid into the jars and watch the magic! Cool, cap and refrigerate for at least 10 days before tasting (this is the hardest part of this pickle-making exercise).
I look at them sitting in the fridge, and taste (just one slice) everyday, waiting for the 10 days to be over. The flavour improves every day.
These seem very versatile and I would think you could virtually add any kind of vegetable. Adjust the salt-sugar ratio to your liking. The spices too could be altered to make them more Indian (or not). I like them the way they are – a glorious deep pink, and crunchy, tart and mildly spicy. You may keep adding vegetables to the jar, adjust the salt and sugar, and make it go further.
Let me see how long you can stay without making a batch. Here’s to guilt-free temptation…