Do Chua, or carrot and daikon pickles, are a staple on Vietnamese tables (well…refrigerators.) Don’t let the ease and simplicity of the recipe fool you – these pickles have some serious flavor. They’re perfect for cooling the palate with a spicy meal, and are an absolute necessity on the amazingly yummy and famous banh mi sandwiches. They’re crisp, tangy, refreshing, and totally addictive. (I’ve been eating them out of the refrigerator for a few days now)
Don’t just relegate these pickles to sandwich duty! Oh no…they taste great on their own, alongside some roasted meat, or on top of my favorite Korean rice dish, bipimbap. Try them on a salad too, or you can just stand in front of the open fridge and eat them right out of the container like me. I’m a classy lady, don’t cha know.
- 1 pound daikon radish (smaller daikons tend to have better flavor)
- If you’re unfamiliar with daikon radishes, they look quite like very large, white carrots. Similar to parsnips, but larger and with a smoother skin.They have a much more mild flavor with the traditional small red variety, and pair perfectly with sweet crunchy carrots.
- 1 pound carrots (about 4-5)
- 1 cup white distilled vinegar
- 1 cup slightly warm water (not hot)
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons salt (plus additional for softening veg)
- Peel your carrots and daikon
- Using your vegetable peeler, slice into long thin ribbons
- Alternatively, slice into thin matchsticks or whatever shape suits your fancy. The veggie peeler method was quite easy and painless.
- Add sliced/diced/peeled/ribboned carrot daikon mixture to a large colander. Sprinkle with some salt, toss to coat evenly and allow to sit over a bowl on in your sink for 20 minutes or so to soften.
- I skipped this step because my ribbons were so thin – they needed no softening. If you go the slightly thicker matchstick route, be sure not to skip it.
- Rinse under cool water and drain well
- In a large container with a tight fitting lid (I used my trusty tupperware) add remaining ingredients, and stir to thoroughly dissolve sugar and salt
- Add carrot/daikon mix and toss to distribute and cover
- Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.
- The pickles will become more sour as they age, so plan accordingly to make ahead if you like them strong. They will last up to a month in the fridge, but never survive more than a week in our house.
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