Thursday, July 10, 2014

quick pickled watermelon radishes and fennel

pretty pink picklemania.
Watermelon Radishes & Fennel.
anxiety-inducing seasonality be (ever so slightly) damned.

Sometimes spring and summer produce gives me anxiety. Truthfully, sometimes most things give me anxiety, but we're here to talk about vegetables. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE summer (and all of the radishes, cucumbers, corn, tomatoes, etc. that come with it) but sometimes that "love with a capitol L" leads to irrational excitement which leads to overbuying and that overbuying leads to panic.
Or the excitement leads to panic and that panic leads to overbuying....
How on earth am I going to eat all of these ______ 
*fill in the blank with seasonally appropriate produce* before they go bad? 
How can I keep eating said seasonally appropriate produce 
even when it is no longer seasonally appropriate???
Quick pickles are the answer.
A little vinegar, a little spice.
Seasonality temporarily upended,
(vegetable-based) anxiety alleviated.

And the picklemania? Totally manageable.

pretty pickle therapy.


Quick Pickled Watermelon Radishes 
& Fennel.
(will fill one quart jar)

1 bunch watermelon radishes (about 3-4)
1 large fennel bulb with stalks and fronds attached
1/2c unseasoned rice vinegar
1Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2tsp sea salt
2tsp organic sugar
2tsp freshly ground coriander seeds
2 star anise pods
2Tbsp toasted sesame oil

Scrub and peel watermelon radishes, removing stem and root end.
Use a mandolin or a sharp knife to cut into 1/8" slices.

Scrub fennel bulb then remove stalks and root end.
Halve bulb and cut into 1/8" slices.
You can also slice some of the more tender, lower portions of the stalks for pickling,
but this is optional.
Trim about 1/3c fennel fronds away from stalks and reserve.

Whisk together vinegar, lime juice, salt, sugar and sesame oil.
In a clean quart jar or large bowl combine sliced radishes and fennel.
Pour vinegar mixture over top.
Add ground coriander seeds and star anise and reserved fennel fronds 
gently stir or cap jar and shake to combine.
The liquid will not completely cover the vegetables.
Give them a stir or a shake every 12 hours or so to redistribute it.
Refrigerate for at least a couple of hours before eating, allowing the flavors to marry.

The longer you leave them, the more intense the taste.
Serve as a side or, my favorite, over seasoned sushi rice, 
spooning extra pickling liquid over top.
Will keep for up to a month in the fridge.

don't eat the (star) anise.


  1. Oh my, these pickles are gorgeous! Can not wait to try the recipe. :)

    1. Thank you- would love to get your feedback once you do!

  2. had this recipe bookmarked just hoping i'd find watermelon radishes at the market someday. today was that day! was so excited to finally make these pickles and they did not let me down. beautiful and delicious! a+ all the way.

    1. So happy to hear that! Pretty food just tastes better, doesn't it? :)