I have known a woman named Pickle, and also a cat. The cat was so-named because of her extreme sourness. In fact, she was described as “Too Evil To Die.” I don’t know about the woman. She seemed a pleasant enough lady. According to Babycenter, which offers “expert advice” on names, seven babies per million in 2014 were given the name “Pickle.”
Recently, GoodFoodEveryday contributed a recipe for Vietnamese pickles to Littlerock. I decided that I had to try it. I am a pickle lover, and keeping pickles about the place helps me eat more vegetables. You might think that as a vegetarian, I get plenty of those, but it’s all too easy to fill up on carbs instead. The only way I will eat brussels sprouts is in pickled form, which removes the bitterness and makes them soft enough for my misaligned molars.
I also tend to scorn turnips–unless they are presented in pickle form. I love those pink Middle Eastern pickled turnips that come in a really good felafel sandwich. Good Food’s recipe for Vietnamese pickles (perfect for a bánh mì sandwich) uses turnips with the carrots instead of the more traditional daikon radish. I happened to have a few turnips sitting in the fridge, courtesy of the Long Suffering Husband (he usually does the shopping, and has been known to Go Rogue). Best of all, the recipe is easy and quick.
First you coat the veggies in salt and sugar, so that they yield up their water (Oh, the wonders of osmosis!). Then you rinse off the salt and sugar, put the aspiring pickles in mason jars, and top them with a brine of vinegar, water, sugar and salt. I put a garlic clove in each jar too, and some red pepper flakes. Refrigerate for at least an hour (they are better the longer they sit), and voilà. The perfect little nibble for those late morning cravings…