I have a confession to make, I am a pickle-obsessed person! I adore that tangy sweet-and-sour flavour that enhances a dish. Not only that, it’s a great way of preserving the garden harvest. If you follow my blog you’ll know that I have been pickling all sorts from the veg patch. The carrots have been a resounding success this year. I made the decision to stagger the planting to combat a glut so we’ve been enjoying them from July until now. Anyone who has ever tasted homegrown carrots knows how much more flavour they have and no comparison to shop bought. Now that we find ourselves in September it’s time to pull up what remains of the crop. Asian Spiced Pickled Carrot springs to mind…
How should I serve Asian Spiced Pickled Carrot I hear you ask. I absolutely love them in a Poke bowl or as a side with sushi or even in or on a sandwich, depending on whether you like one slice or 2 of bread. I especially like them with avocado.
The carrots are peeled, then cut into julienne, (I use a mandolin) and then brined. Add warmth and pep from ginger and chilli along with earthy citrus notes from the lemongrass makes these pickles so delectable. They can be eaten almost immediately, however the flavour deepens after a few days in the fridge and can be enjoyed as you would any pickled vegetable. I used Sarson’s Distilled Malt Vinegar and a touch of rice wine vinegar in this recipe.
You don’t have to stop at carrots, adding mouli (diakon) is also delicious. Although I haven’t tried this pickling liquor with beetroot, I can imagine it working well too. If you prefer more conventional flavours you could try my recipe for Aromatic Sweet Pickled Beetroot.
Although cutting the carrots into julienne takes concentration and patience, the other steps in this recipe honestly takes no time at all. So when you’re mashing an avocado for your lunch to top your sourdough toast, add a little zingy spiced carrot to liven it all up.
Asian Spiced Pickled Carrot
- 2 large or 4 small kilner jars
- 1 kg carrots peeled
- 2.5 cm piece fresh ginger peeled
- 4 cloves garlic peeled & sliced
- 1½ Tbls coriander seeds roughly crushed in a pestle & mortar
- 2 lemon grass stalks
- 2-3 red chillis sliced
- 370 g distilling malt vinegar
- 390 g water
- 130 g rice wine vinegar
- 160 g sugar
- 2 tsp fine sea salt
- Begin with the jars. Wash well in hot soapy water and then rinse. Dry them well then place on a tray in the oven with the lids. temperature no more than 100°C/90°C fan.
- Next cut the carrots into julienne. If you have a mandolin it makes the job very easy, however take care, a mandolin can be vicious. Slicing the carrots finely and then cutting into fine matchsticks takes longer but is an equally good option. Finely chop the ginger, I prefer to do this rather than mincing, I find the flavour is better. Chillis vary in heat, I suggest trying a little before you add it all to the brine. Cut the lemongrass into 3 and bash with the heal of a knife.
- Place the vinegars, water, salt and sugar in a large saucepan. Add the remaining ingredients except the carrots. Bring to a slow simmer. Now add the carrots and bring to a slow boil. Simmer for a minute or two. remove from the heat. Have the sterilised jars ready. With sterilised tongs, place the carrots in the jars. Pour over the brine, making sure the carrots are submerged in the liquor. With a clean damp piece of kitchen paper, wipe around the rim of each jar. Attach the lids. Leave to cool then place in the fridge. Once the jars have been opened, eat within 10 days.