This quick and easy recipe for peppery pickled carrots was created by Karen Solomon, author of Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Can It, Bottle It, Smoke It and most recently, Asian Pickles: Japan. Solomon is an expert in food preservation and DIY kitchen techniques. This is the perfect project for a preserving newbie — no canning required! — but cooks of all levels will love the delicious kick of flavor.
“Wasabi” Pickled Carrots
Why am I using “quotes?” Because while this is bursting with wasabi flavor, there is no actual wasabi in it. Real wasabi is hard to come by. And the stuff you and I have access to in the grocery store—the green-tinged powder, or that gunk in the tube—is just dreadful; it’s full of artificial color, preservatives, and mysterious chemicals, and the flavor shows it. Instead, I hereby direct you to buy yourself a fresh bottle of prepared horseradish, close your eyes, and tell yourself it’s wasabi for this recipe and for any sushi you make at home. If you must, add a little green food coloring or spirulina powder for color. Leftover horseradish can be smeared on your roast beef sandwich, or saved for the gefilte fish on Passover.
Time: About 1 hour
1 pound carrots, preferable a mix of colors, peeled
4 teaspoons prepared horseradish
1 tablespoon kosher salt
4 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1½ teaspoons very finely minced or grated fresh ginger (use a Microplane grater if you have one)
Using a vegetable peeler, peel the carrots into ribbons, getting as much out of each carrot as you can; discard (or eat) the nubs. Combine the carrots with the horseradish, salt, sugar, red pepper flakes, and ginger and toss very well, using a fork (or two, if necessary) to really work the seasoning into the carrot ribbons. Cover with a drop lid and 1 pound of weight and let sit for 30 minutes, retaining any liquid that falls to the bottom of the bowl. After a quick toss, the pickle is ready to eat; covered and refrigerated, it keeps at least 6 weeks.
Permission is for one-time, nonexclusive use of the requested recipe and accompanying images and is based on:
“Reprinted with permission from Asian Pickles Japan: Recipes for Japanese Sweet, Sour, Salty, Cured, and Fermented Tsukemono, by Karen Solomon, copyright © 2012. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.”
Photo credit: Jennifer Martiné © 2012
[…] “Wasabi” Pickled Carrots For pickles with immediate gratification, try these ginger- and horseradish-spiked carrots, which take only 30 minutes to make, but will last for up to six weeks. They’d be great with seafood or an array of Asian rice dishes. […]
I have a wasabi plant and use it often for sushi. Would I substitute equal parts wasabi for the horseradish or…? Please advise
Sounds yummy! What is a drop lid?
Hi Saundra, many Asian pickles are covered with a weighted drop lid that sits directly on top of the food — it helps the vegetables compress as they release their liquid. You can buy lids made especially for pickling or use a plate, clean glass jar, saucer, or saucepan lid (anything that fits inside the container).
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