Breakfast cheesecake and sunflowers to start my day! Today is a new day (obviously) and I’m feeling a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. If you haven’t noticed (all my mother’s friends have), I’ve been a little MIA lately. Hesitant to share too much of my personal story here, but a friend suggested I try it, so here it goes. I recently got out of perhaps one of the best relationships I’ve ever had. It’s hard to explain, but the insecure feeling of moving forward is more than daunting as I no longer have that friend around to “have my back”. I’m learning how to avoid situations and adapt to growing in such a small area where everyone knows everyone’s business. Receiving condolences while in downward facing dog is not really what I had in mind when I decided to zen out that morning… On the upside, my lightened and brightened shoulders are starting to defrost (multiple meanings here) and I’m determined to get myself and this here blog back in routine. News of local farms starting their seeds, and writing for the local Edible edition is preparing me for the bounty of spring and summer harvest to come.
Last Saturday I walked the farmers’ market for over an hour searching for pickle inspiration. Nothing, nothing, and nothing. But then these brightly colored watermelon radishes caught my eye. No stranger to watermelon radishes, this lot from Heron Pond Farm in South Hampton, NH was more than beautiful. These sichuan style pickles boast tons of flavor and color. I recommend serving them atop your favorite asian salad or cold noodle dish. Enjoy!
- 2.5lbs watermelon radishes
- 1 cinnamon sticks (broken up)
- 1 star anise (broken up)
- 2 inches fresh ginger (peeled and diced coarsely)
- 2 Tbsp hot dried peppers (or red chile flakes)
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1-1/2 Tbsp sea/pickling salt
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 2 cups water
- Peal and slice radishes into 1/8-1/4 inch thick wedges.
- In a medium-sized, non-ionized pot combine water, vinegar, sugar, salt, and red peppers. Over medium heat bring to just a boil. Remove from heat, and then strain off peppers from liquid.
- Divide remaining ingredients between 4 pint jars (leaving 1/2 inch headspace), then top off each jar with liquid brine leaving approximately 1/2 inch headspace.
- Wipe rims, apply lids and rings (finger tight), and process jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.
- Remove jars from water bath and let them cool on a folded towel for 12-24 hours.
- Store jars in a cool, dry place for at least 3 weeks before consuming. Shelf stable for up to 1 year.