March 14, 2013 § 5 Comments
Looking back through the archives, it seems that every year around this time pickles make an appearance. Perhaps it’s to do with the lull between winter veg and new spring veg, since I certainly eat pickles year round. But right now, in March, pickled vegetables perk everything up; they’re light on effort and brighten up even the most ordinary vegetables and meals.
I hadn’t made pickled carrots in a while, and so when I’d got everything else ready it dawned on me that I was out of fresh ginger and frozen ginger. But, recalling the jar of candied ginger used in the pear-ginger sugar muffins, I decided to give it a try, subbing out some of the added sugar in my typical carrot pickling mixture for the sugar inherent in candied ginger. « Read the rest of this entry »
April 15, 2012 § 7 Comments
When left to my own devices, I’m not that likely to cook a whole meal at once. More often than not, I will make a few dishes that roughly coordinate and then assemble them into meals as hunger and patience levels dictate. For those who similarly appreciate this casual “cut and come again” style, these beet pickles will hopefully become a part of your repertoire, as they’re so easy to make, last a while in the refrigerator, and taste like more effort was put into them than really was. These are high impact, low effort fast food, once you take into account that there is a two day waiting period while the beets and the spicy, sweet, and sour pickling liquid mingle.
Beets were never a huge part of my food lexicon growing up, but within the last few years they’ve graduated from idle appreciation to full-out obsession, which is surprising since they’re a rather humble vegetable. However, their clear, sweetly earthy taste, satisfying crunch even when pickled, and most of all their showstopping colors, brighten even the dreariest day. « Read the rest of this entry »
April 12, 2011 § 4 Comments
Ginger-scallion noodles and quick pickles are some of the easiest dishes I know, and more importantly, they’re tasty and crowd-pleasing. Mostly, though, I adore them because they bring alive the flavors of my childhood. Ginger and scallions are, of course, two cornerstones of Chinese cooking, along with soy sauce and garlic, and the pickles are kind of a cousin to my mom’s classic cucumber salad, and one of my very first posted recipes.
I am inordinately fond of the pickles because for a long time I never thought I’d be able to eat them again, the restaurant where I first enjoyed them having closed right after I graduated from college. While all the meals were spectacular (and I’m still trying to replicate a few other dishes), the taste of the pickles in particular fascinated me. They are subtly sweet with a slight sour kick and perfect with any sort of Asian-type meal, though I generally tend to make them to accompany these ginger-scallion noodles, as their fresh, crisp taste contrasts nicely with the ginger-scallion sauce. « Read the rest of this entry »