Recipe: Vietnamese Pickled Daikon (Do Chua)

Do Chua (pickled radish)

Do Chua (Vietnamese pickled radish)

This is the crunchy condiment found in bahn mi. It’s supposed to be an equal amount of carrots and radish, but carrots are hard to shred so I use just enough for color. Can also be eaten as a slaw.

1 whole daikon, approx 2 lbs
1 lb whole carrots
2 t salt
2 t sugar
1 1/2 c water
1 1/2 c white or rice vinegar
2 whole garlic cloves, peeled (optional)
1/2 jalapeño, sliced (optional)

Method: peel and trim the daikon and carrots. Shred using the fine blade of a mandoline, taking care not to bloody your knuckles. Rub the salt into the shredded vegetables and allow to sit about 30 minutes until a good amount of liquid is released. Rinse and drain out most of the water. Dissolve sugar in water/vinegar mix and pour over vegetables. Add optional garlic and/or jalapeño if you like. Cure in refrigerator for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. This will keep about 2 weeks under refrigeration; after that it becomes too sour to eat.

Note: daikon tend to release an “old shoe” odor when you shred them, so don’t do this right before that special someone is arriving for your first date.

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