Turnips. You either love them or hate them. No in between.
Personally I adore them especially when they’re pickled, spiked with raw beetroots to give them a gorgeous pink allure.
Almost every Lebanese restaurant will offer you a complimentary plate of turnip pickles, olives and fresh mint before your bum has even touched the seat on arrival.
I must confess, I’ve known to abuse the free pickle system. I polish the plate with Lebanese bread before the waiter comes back to ask for our order and I get the chance to order ask for more. They’re seriously addictive!
It’s a shame many supermarkets have stopped selling turnips. I assume it could be because they’re not the most popular vegetable to fly off the shelves. Check your local farmers markets, or even your Asian grocer; the Japanese also enjoy a great turnip pickle. I found these beauties at the markets recently and knew immediately I HAD to have them.
I mean, look at them! They’re gorgeous!
Even more so once they’re teamed up with Beets. This pickle recipe is as easy as it gets. The transformation from white to baby pink and finally neon pink is quite remarkable!
Lebanese Style Turnip Pickles.
- 1 kilo turnips
- 1 Beetroot
- 1 cloves garlic, whole
- 1 ½ cups vinegar (white distilled)
- 3-4 tablespoons salt
- 3 ½ cups Water
Sterilise your jar by washing it well with hot soapy water, and then pouring boiling water from the jug directly into the jar. Let it sit for 5 minutes with the lid, then pour it out and let it air dry.
Slice up your turnips and beetroots into small batons, like you would if you were making chips
Press the turnips and beets into the sterilized jar, together with the whole garlic.
In a separate cup, mix together the vinegar and salt until the salt is completely dissolved.
Top the vinegar and salt mixture with the cold water, mix well and pour the mixture into the jar until it completely covers all the turnips. Seal the lid air tight.
I have used a bit of glad wrap under the lid as mine didnt seal properly and I wanted to ensure it was air tight. If your jar has a tight fitting lid, you don’t have to use the cling wrap.
Give the jar a little shake to evenly distribute the liquid and store it away in a dark cool place for a week.
After a week, give them a try. If they’re still tart, give them another 3 days of storage. Refrigerate once open.
I felt very privileged when management from Frenchs Forest Organic Markets took the time to interview me this week, please take a moment to view the post HERE
I’ve never had a turnip pickle. I can eat it raw but I’ve never been fond of cooked turnip. I think I’d like your pickles.
Raw? How does it taste when raw. Never tasted them in the most original (ie. raw) way. lol 😀
crispy and crunchy, a bit like radish!
I see. any bitterness or sweetness?
You’d love it Maureen, your Lebanese food loving hubby too! Crispy and crunchy, very much the same texture as the raw form 🙂
I normally use vinegar to pickle turnip. It taste great. Will try yours soon. Btw, the interview is pretty informative.
Ooh, I’d like to try these pickled turnips, love the colour! Fab interview too! 🙂
Thanks so much Danielle!! Have a great week
I didn’t realise you could pickle turnips… sheltered upbringing, I know! We eat turnips (‘neaps’) mashed with butter and black pepper, along with potatoes (‘tatties’) and haggis – once a year for Burns night.
The first time I went to London, I remember seeing a sign at a pub for Tatties and Haggis, I was thinking ‘I thought they spoke English here’ LOL now I know!! 😉
I’ve never heard of it either. Love the gorgeous pink colour!
You’ll have to try them next time you’re at a Lebanese restaurant Claire, you’ll be hooked!
Ooh, I mega-love cooked turnip – one of THE vegetables from my childhood!! But am looking back and do not think I have had it pickled 🙂 ? What a week for pickling this has been, but unlike all the late summer vegetables from the Northern Hemisphere, yours comes from now: hmm, my s’market usually has some, so shall collect it all, and try this!!!!!!! Thank you 🙂 !
time to try a new way Eha! I think you’ll find turnips best when they’re pickled 🙂
Have my doubts 🙂 ! I actually put them in a pot au feu in the winter months and let them absorb all the taste from the various meats 😀 !!!!!
oh fab tip, I’ve never tried that! Thanks Eha x
Pickled turnips? I never heard of this before and now I want to try them! Like that you put some beetroot in the jar to color them. Great idea, Lisa! Like, too, that the jars aren’t processed in a hot water bath. That will keep the turnips crisp and that’s how I like ’em. 🙂
You should try them John, you have the canning and pickling bug at the moment, why not try something new?! The turnips are certainly crispy and crunchy, exactly how I love them too 🙂
These look fantastic Lisa and congratulations on your interview too! 😀
Thanks so much Lorraine 🙂
I grew up eating swedes and turnips, but they are certainly at their best when nice and small. These pickles sound just delicious and the colour is so pretty too!
The colour is just gorgeous! Who needs artificial dye’s when mother nature has the best of all?!
Lisa, now I know why all the pickles in Lebanon were pink. Very smart.
Yup, because white pickles just won’t do 😉
I love turnips. Thanks for a great recipe 🙂
most welcome Tandy x
Hey Lisa nice interview from frenchs forest market! And agreed with Glenda above, I had no idea either until now.
thanks lovely 🙂
I grew up in Israel and remember seeing such jars of pickles at our neighbor’s house. As much as I remember, they were of Iraqi descent. They were wonderful but I never made them and now that I read your blog I will give them a try the next time I see nice turnips in the marker.
Thanks for the recipe and memories. 🙂
I didn’t know they were of Iraqi descent! Thanks for sharing and I hope you like my version 🙂
In Israel, Jews from Iraq are known for their pickles, but actually these “wog” (never heard about this term before reading your blog..) foods are found all around the middle east and Mediterranean, so it’s all about where we saw it first…
I still didn’t find nice turnips, but I’m sure I’ll like your version! 🙂
I don’t pickle turnips but I do pickle daikon, which is really a turnip. Adding a beet to add color is a colorful idea.
thanks Norma, yes the beets give it such a gorgeous pink colour, beats any artificial dye. I’m sure pickled daikon would taste very similar, especially when marinated in garlic and vinegar.
These turnips look gorgeous. I love pickled everything…and beautiful!
thanks so much!
I don’t mind turnips! I didn’t have them when I was growing up because my mother was force-fed them as a child and so wouldn’t cook with them. The Harris Farm store where I shop always has turnips. Jamie Oliver has some great recipes using turnips – but not turnip pickles! I don’t think I’ve ever tried these but now I really must – back up to Harris Farm I go! xx
I hope you like them Charlie, shame your Mum was force fed them, how awful!
I adore pickles and these Turnip Pickles are no exceptions! 🙂 Can’t wait to try them out.
Hey Amy, thanks for stopping by 🙂 hope you like my version!
I love turnips too. But normally, i make a white mustard bechamel sauce with them, but I must make this lovely sounding pickle with the beets in there too! With what do you eat it with???
A great interview too! 😉 x
ooh a white béchamel turnip sauce! I’d love the recipe of that, sounds fabulous! I eat the pickles with roast chicken normally, grab a Lebanese bread or wrap, stuff with shredded roast chook, turnip pickles, lettuce, mayo and lettuce. Roll it up and devour 🙂
Oh very nice . dont you eat these with falafels?. These would be great for lots of things
Yep, falafels and lashings of garlic sauce! Yum
I freaking LOVE LOVE LOVE pickled turnip. I only had it for the first time a few years ago at El Jannah and now I’m addicted.
ooooh El Jannah!! Yum 🙂 Chicken, pickled turnips and lashings of garlic sauce. It just doesn’t get better!
Another El Jannah fan here. Pity it’s only me that eats the turnip & tabbouli.
Not a pity Ralf, means there’s more for you to enjoy 🙂
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Lisa – I am in Tulsa, Oklahoma (least place you’d imagine these!) – but about 30 years ago when I was pregnant, I ran across them and was completely addicted! Then I couldn’t find them for years – and I finally googled again this past week to find them on your blog. Thrilled!!! I have a pound of turnips on my kitchen table just waiting to be pickled. Really appreciate you sharing this with us!
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