I have been obsessed with radishes this year. I seem to crave them daily and they’ve become my go-to snack. And as far as cravings go, I’ll run with radishes because they’re so good for me. Along with all cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, collards, rutabaga, kohlrabi), radishes are high in vitamin A, C, K, folic acid and fiber. The crucifers are also high in phytonutrients that are cancer-preventative and support liver health. Since fermentation often helps to liberate phytonutrients making them easier to assimilate, I’m a huge fan of fermenting a variety of veggies, herbs and spices.
This recipe for Crunchy Radishes is a great one to serve ferment skeptics because they’re delicious! Salty, crunchy and acidic - it’s not a salt-and-vinegar potato chip, but it’s in the same flavour world. Add them to salads, sandwiches or enjoy them straight out of the jar!
Fermentation time: 3-7 days
Equipment: 500ml wide mouthed glass jar, weight (fermenting stone, boiled rock or smaller jar that fits inside rim of wide-mouth)
2 cups sliced radishes, washed and trimmed
Optional: 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
Brine: 1 and 1/2 tsp of sea salt and 1 cup of water
Pack sliced radishes into jar until they are roughly 1 inch from the top. Use a tamper or your hand to pack them down well.
Make your brine by dissolving sea salt into water.
Pour brine over radishes until about 1/2 inch from the top of the jar.
Place weight on top to submerge all the radishes under the brine.
Cover with a lid or piece of clean cloth to keep our fruit flies and dust.
Set aside to ferment in a cooler spot of your kitchen, away from direct light.
Start tasting on day 3, you want to allow the acidity of fermentation to develop (this will be what preserves the radishes) but still leave a good amount of crunch in the radishes. The longer it ferments, the more the acids of fermentation will soften the radishes. (Note: The sulphur in the radishes will start to release as they ferment, so expect a slight fart-y smell, it’s totally normal and you won’t taste it I promise!)
Once you like them, remove the weight and seal tightly. Store in the fridge for up to 1 year.