First, those turnips. Pickle them. Yes, everybody’s pickling and maybe you’re over it, but this nice recipe was demonstrated by Nick Leahy of Saltyard at the Peachtree Road Farmers Market and it’s really lovely. You could pickle your radishes, too. I love these slices in sandwiches. Crazy about them. When hakurei turnips get this big, that’s a perfect use.
Or just braise them in a little broth, maybe with some soy sauce? Ian Winslade of Morningside Kitchen did a demo doing that at the Morningside market last year. They were yummy. Add a little honey if the turnips seem at all bitter to you.
One more idea for fermented vegetables. This is adapted from a recipe in Saveur magazine. It’s sort of like a mild kimchi – a nice compromise. The sterilized container part is important. You don’t want any funky bacteria messing up your sauerkraut.
Kimchi is traditionally made with Napa cabbage, and is a great way to use daikon radishes. If you only have “regular” cabbage – just substitute it for the Napa in the recipe.
The Korean chili powder is pretty essential. You can find it at the Buford Highway Farmers Market, but also at grocers that specialize in Korean foods.
The recipe comes from “Tart and Sweet” by Kelly Geary and Jessie Knadler. Add some sliced mustard greens if you like, that’s also a traditional addition.
This soup recipe comes from Florence Fabricant and will use up quite a bit of radish. Serve it hot, or chill it and serve it cold.
In place of the green chili it calls for, you can also a Scotch bonnet pepper, but DON’T CUT IT UP. Just simmer the whole pepper in the soup when you add the shrimp, and then remove it before serving. You just want a bit of the heat, not the whole scorching thing.
Adapted from a recipe in “Smoke & Pickles” by Edward Lee.
Serve with “Imperfect Rice.”
The rice recipe makes enough for 4 large rice bowls or 6 appetizer-sized ones
The goal when cooking rice this way is to achieve a thin layer of toasted crust in the bottom of the pot. The crispy layer in contrast with the fluffy layer of rice on top is a sumptuous combination. I use a 10-inch cast-iron skillet. You could seek out a stone rice crock like the ones they use in Korean restaurants, but the cast-iron pan works just fine. Make your favorite toppings while the rice is cooking. When the toppings are ready, divide the warm rice, crunchy bits and all, among rice bowls and serve.