Friday, 2 September 2011
Radish Relish, Radish Relish, Radish Relish
I found a recipe for radish pickles, but there was a caveat that the radishes tended to get wizened and unattractive. Thanks for the warning. I'm not going to bother with an unattractive pickle, thank you.
Radish relish sounded better, although the recipe seemed to be more celery than radish, and I don't like celery much. So I modified that considerably, using just the proportions given to calculate how much vegetable to syrup I needed.
I used an old fashioned food grinder/grain mill to chop the radishes and onions. If you have or can borrow a food processor that would work well, too. A blender wouldn't work, I think, and the strainer type food mill wouldn't handle the tough radishes. A hand grater would be impossible.
So, equipment needed: Food grinder or processor; medium sized pot; pint or half-pint jars for a total of 2 pints; canning lids for those jars; hot water bath canner and jar lifter.
Ingredients: 3 cups or so radishes, any variety; 2 medium onions; 2 teaspoons salt; 1 cup white sugar; 1 tablespoon brown mustard seed; 2 teaspoons dill seed; 1/2 teaspoon celery seed (increase to 1 teaspoon if you like); 1 teaspoon coriander seed; 1 cup cider vinegar.
Grind the radishes, having topped, tailed and scrubbed them, but don't peel them, as the skin lends the colour; peel and quarter the onions, then grind into the radish mixture. Mix with the rest of the ingredients, cover and let stand overnight. Make sure you are using a non-reactive bowl or pot, not aluminum or non-stick. When ready to can, bring the mixture to a boil and cook about ten minutes. Process in the hot water canner for 20 minutes.
The old fashioned mill I used is like the one my mother had. Once clamped to a suitable tabletop or counter - and it took three attempts to find one the appropriate thickness and stability - be sure to place a pot under it, as the juices run through. I had a puddle of pink juice at first, cleaned that up, got a pot and hastily improvised rags under it, and still had splashes. Canning is not a job that calls for a white apron. The juice did not stain, though. I use a small roasting pan to catch the ground vegetables, as a bowl is too high. Use a heavy wooden spoon as a pusher, especially if you are the kind of person who tends to poke at jammed items in a chute while simultaneously trying to clear the clog by wiggling the handle. Ouch. That nail will have to be removed in the ER. (No, I didn't do that this time, because I had a wooden spoon.)