Thursday, July 12, 2012

How to Make Lebanese Pickled Turnips (Lift) Without Numbers

I've had great success growing turnips this summer. One challenge for those who garden is figuring out what to do with, oh, three dozen turnips that you pull out of the ground on the same day.

Pickling is always a fallback, so I decided to make a big jar of Lebanese pickled turnips (lift). I received instructions from someone who makes them all the time but isn't the best with passing on complete recipes. I spoke with him twice for directions, which was a good thing since he forgot to mention water as an ingredient the first time we talked.

There are probably as many variations of this recipe as there are villages in Lebanon (confirmed by Googling "marinated turnips lift") and I'm sure they are all pretty good. Water to vinegar ratios will vary, as will the amount of salt used. Unfortunately, my source forgot to mention garlic, which every recipe I saw online includes. I'll make another batch using garlic and see if it makes a difference.

Here are the instructions I received, which included no exact measurements whatsoever:
"Cut turnips (you don't have to peel) into size like French fry and fill three-quarters of jar. Also add a small beet (peel it) that you've cut into four pieces. Add water to height of turnips and add salt. Mix and taste. Add more salt if you need to. Add white or red vinegar (it doesn't matter, whatever you have) to top of jar. Put in refrigerator, you can eat after three days."
Mine are in their third day of marinating and they've turned the desired light pink color (thanks to the beet). I just tasted one and they are very good, but I think the missing garlic would add a nice kick.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

We are in a drought and 100+ temps, so our vegetable harvest is and will not be quite what was expected, what with tomatoes, eggplant and peppers not setting fruit. However, I have a bumper crop of collard greens and am chopping, blanching and freezing in hopes of a "green winter" when local foods are not available.