Pickling is all the rage, but people rarely think of pickling turnip. They’re sweet and crunchy and the perfect side to your next big sandwich or burger. It’s also good with Japanese curry. Kombu is thick, dark-coloured kelp that is sold dried.
Makes a 1-quart (1 L) jar
- 2 pounds (900 g) turnips (about 5 medium)
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) kosher salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons (7.5 mL) finely chopped fresh ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons (7.5 mL) red chili flakes
- 1 piece of kombu (dried kelp), 3 inches (8 cm) square, torn into little pieces (or 1/4 teaspoon/1 mL MSG/ajinomoto)
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) rice vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) water
- Sterilize a 1-quart (1 L) jar by boiling it in water in large stockpot.
- If the turnips have blemishes, peel off the skin, but otherwise you can leave it on. Cut them in half lengthwise, then slice crosswise as thin as possible (1/16 inch/2 mm), using a mandoline or a very sharp chef’s knife. Place in a big bowl, sprinkle with the salt, and massage it into the turnips well. Let stand for half an hour.
- In the meantime, prepare the pickling liquid. In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients together until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Set aside.
- Drain and squeeze the excess water from the turnips. In the sterilized jar, layer the turnip with a sprinkle of the ginger, chili flakes, and kombu. Repeat until all the turnip slices and the aromatics are packed tightly.
- Pour in the pickling liquid. If it doesn’t cover the turnips, just top it up with water just to cover. Close the lid of the jar and refrigerate for 3 to 4 days before eating.
- Keeps well in the fridge for 3 weeks.