Rootin-tootin Fermented Radishes

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Fermented radishes ready to enjoy…

Our favorite veggie ferment used to be sauerkraut.  THEN then THEN we discovered fermented radishes.  Everything changed.

They are easy to chew.  Sour.  They have a subtle spice to them.  Well.  And, they are pink.

My three year old LOVES them.

The only thing is…they smell like baby diapers.  I know.  Strange.

This ferment smells funky BUT tastes heavenly.

I am over the smell because the crispy, cold sour fermented radishes taste THAT GOOD.

PLUS, this study (waiting to be peer reviewed last I checked, but still fascinating) pointed to potentially lowered mortality in cultures that ate significant amounts of fermented veggies.

“The researchers report that of all the variables considered, only fermented vegetables had a significant impact on the mortality rate by country.

For each gram per day increase in the average national consumption of fermented vegetables, the risk for COVID-19 mortality fell by 35.4%.”

Start choppin’ your veggies, folks!

Seriously, though.  When it comes to fermented veggies, think:  microbiome, probiotics, beneficial bacteria, gut health, mental health, immune system, and enzymes.

Ok, here’s how you create this goodness.

Unlike sauerkraut which ferments in its own juices, radishes need to be added to a brine to ferment.  So.  Yes.  Water and salt.  That’s it.  You can actually ferment any vegetable this way.

I normally buy about 3-4 bunches of radishes…the red and pink ones are my favorite.

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I wash them and them cut them in half…and then slice those halves.

Put them in the jar.  Measure 1 tbsp of sea salt to 2 cups of water and stir well (spring water is best…filtered water is next best).  Fill your jar with this brine until it is about 2 inches below where the top of the radishes are.  Basically, your weighted glass on top will push the radishes down below the brine in an hour or so.

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Place a glass of water in the mouth of your wide-mouth all jar to weight down the radishes.  Try to get as many of them under the salt water as possible.  Put a napkin over the top of the glass and jar combo.

Put your jar of fermenting radishes on something waterproof as your brine may spill out of the top.  You can always pour excess salt water out of the jar later if you put in too much.

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Don’t mind the black ring around the neck of my ball jar.  I tinctured black walnut hull in this jar and it has been permanently stained!

Wait 3-5 days as the lactic acid producing bacteria in your ferment create enough acid to turn your ferment sour.  The salt keeps any problematic bacteria at bay while this acid increase in the soluation.  Taste your radishes to see if they are nice and sour.  If they are, put a cap on top and store in the fridge.  Will store for up to 6 months in its brine.

If you used the radishes with the red skin, you will notice that the salt water turns pink right about the time they are ready to transfer to the fridge.

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We love to eat them as a side with our meal.  I also pack them in a small container to take on picnics with my daughter during the week.  If you chop these up, they make an amazing ‘relish’ of sorts to go on burgers, tacos, and to garnish soups!

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Lunch of pumpernickle, gouda, grapes, lemon cucumber (not shown), and fermented radishes

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