Cauliflower Refrigerator Pickles ♥

Pretty in pink, thanks to (optional) radishes So if we have Those Pink Potatoes and That Pink Salad, why not These Pink Cauliflower Refrigerator Pickles?

Actually, the pink here is entirely optional. I hoped to capture the beautiful radish color (pink and purple and magenta from Easter Egg radishes -- thanks to reader Snowpea for the identification! Instead, like a stray red sock that gets into a load of white, the cauliflower 'sheets' turned pink. Oh well! They 'sleep' just fine.

  • I will remember to strain the hot liquid before pouring it over the blanched cauliflower. That, I suspect, will eliminate some of the cloudiness that would be especially apparent if it weren't for the pink color.
  • I will plan ahead to match the vegetable and herb/flavor with more care. I'm not sure cauliflower and ginger are a hot match. But carrots and ginger? That would be good.
  • I will double the sugar for a less sour result.

FROM THE ARCHIVES For more cauliflower recipes, see the Recipe Box. There are cucumbers, peppers and sweet onion in my favorite refrigerator pickle.

Cauliflower Refrigerator Pickles

Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Time to table: 24 hours
Makes 6 cups vegetables

1 head cauliflower
A dozen radishes, if desired, trimmed and halved to roughly equivalent sizes

Put on a large kettle of water to boil (cover to retain the heat and liquid). Wash and trim the cauliflower. Cut it into bite-size florets of roughly equivalent size. When the water boils, drop in the cauliflower and let cook for 2 - 3 minutes, til just barely done if you want crunch, longer if you want something softer. Let in a colander.

1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
1 1/2 cups white wine vinegar (or some similar combination of clear vinegars)
1 cup water
2 tablespoons kosher salt (or if you're using table salt, maybe a tablespoon)
4 tablespoons sugar (vs the 2 I used)

1 tablespoon garlic (I used it from a jar, but cutting 2 - 3 pieces of garlic into chunks would minimize cloudiness)
1 tablespoons fresh ginger (again, mine came from a jar, I'd use maybe an inch of fresh ginger, cut in thin slices)
6 whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon fennel seed (next time, maybe dill?)

Bring these to a boil in a saucepan.

Sterilize a one-quart glass jar (this isn't as important if you plan to use the pickles within a week, say) in boiling water. (After first warming the glass with hot tap water, this is to prevent it from shattering when it gets hit with the boiling water, I just filled the jar with boiling water from the tea kettle. Pour out the boiling water.) Layer the drained cauliflower and radishes in the jar. Cover with the boiling vinegar liquid to cover all the cauliflower, pressing a bit if necessary to submerge. Cover and refrigerate.

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Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. I bought a cauliflower yesterday at the market that really is tinged with pink. I have no idea why. Maybe it was sat next to the radishes. Or maybe it really is pink.

  2. That's an adorable plate. I do believe some cauliflower grows pink.

  3. AnonymousJune 24, 2007

    Love the stray red sock. Ain't it the truth!

  4. Who needs those expensive orange and purple cauliflowers when you can just make your own!

  5. Sam ~ Next to radishes :-)

    Kelly ~ I'm imagining it next to the purple ones. Girlie Cauliflower!

    Christine ~ Thanks! And you get major points for finding the finer points ...

    Joe ~ Orange, that's a new one for me!

    All ~ I find it funny that what I viewed as a 'negative', the pink color, is what's caught everyone's attention. As always, thanks for stopping in and commenting!

  6. I would caution that when water bathing, you must sterilize your jars thoroughly! Most dishwashers today have a sterilizing option and that works just fine. For years, I filled my jars with water and put them in the water bath pan and brought the whole kit and caboodle to a boil while I prepared my fruit/tomatoes/pickles. When ready to load the jars, I use my lifter to pour the water down the drain then carefully fill my jars, etc. My method allows the jars to be sterilized and also gives me the correct water level for processing my jars. Hope that helps those who are new to food preservation.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna