This flash-pickling side/salsa comes together in minutes. So far I've just eaten it with a spoon, but I image it would be quite nice tossed with still-warm, lightly distressed new potatoes. Or maybe white fish, chicken or shrimp. Or as a sandwich topping, perhaps to lend balance to pulled pork, or another rich, stewed meat. (Note: I ate this, a day old, tossed with some Israeli cous cous, a squeeze of lemon juice, and a touch of leftover avocado to delicious results.) —Cristina Sciarra
Test Kitchen Notes
This relish is similar to a cucumber salad that my husband makes from his days working in his father’s grocery store, but much better. The lime and rice vinegar make the salad gently tart, and the honey makes it gently sweet. The oil adds needed heat and roundness. (Daunted by 4 tablespoons of chili oil, I used olive oil and added red pepper flakes till it was hot enough.) I also salted the onions ahead of time to soften them, and used the juice of the whole lime. A really wonderful and versatile recipe. —drbabs
8 "topping" servings
the juice of 1/2 a small lime
1.5 tablespoon rice vinegar
1.5 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon chili oil
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small red onion
1 small bunch of radishes
1 small English cucumber
1/2 cup chickpeas
a pinch of sea salt, a crack of black pepper
In This Recipe
Add the lime juice and the rice vinegar to a small bowl, giving them a quick whisk to combine. Add the honey, and then the oil. Whisk briskly until the oil and the vinegar come together.
Peel the onion. Slice it in half lengthwise, and then cut each half into slices, as thin as possible. Move the slices to the dressing bowl. (I like to do this first, so the onion has a chance to mellow in the vinegary dressing while I prepare the rest of the ingredients.)
Wash and cut the ends off of all the radishes. Slice them up crosswise, as thinly as possible. Set aside.
Wash the cucumber. Slice this up crosswise too, again, as thinly as possible.
In a large bowl, toss together the dressing, the onion, the radish, the cucumber and the chickpeas. Give it a taste. It almost certainly needs some sea salt. A swift crack of black pepper is a good idea too.
You can eat this right away, while all the vegetables are still crisp, or you can let it sit for a bit. Letting it sit will make liquidy, more of a sauce.
Cristina is a writer, cook, and day job real estate developer. She studied literature, holds an MFA in Fiction Writing, and completed the Basic Cuisine course at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. She lives in Jersey City with her husband--a Frenchman she met in Spain--and their sweet black cat, Minou. Follow her writings, recipes, publications and photography at theroamingkitchen.com.