Japanese pickles is one of the comes out a lot on Japanese breakfast table from long time ago. Pickles were used as hashiyasume. It literally means resting chopsticks and enjoyed during each plate to refresh your palate with different flavor and flavor between main dish and side dish, enhancing the other dishes.
There are many varieties of pickles in Japan, but this time, we will introduce Asazuke pickles that can be done in regular household. Asazuke, generally means pickles that can be done in a few hours. It’s one of the most popular pickles in Japan and can be made by the common households. Asazuke rubs various vegetable with salt, draining water from them to enjoy saturated umami from vegetable and kombu seaweed.
When speaking of pickles, many might think sour fermented pickles. However, Asazuke does not use fermentation in a process so you can enjoy pure umami with no sourness just like quick snacks. It’s easy to make and tasty so please try at your house. All you need is vegetable, salt and kombu.
- Vegetables – use fresh vegetable. Any vegetable can be used but common vegetable being used are Chinese cabbage, cabbage, cucumber, radish. Other vegetables include celery, carrot, and leafy vegetables.
- Salt – salt help drain water from vegetable and can saturate umami in vegetables.
- Kombu seaweed – used to extract more umami from vegetables. Kombu gives a depth in the taste of pickles. Kombu also helps get rid of sodium out of body so it can help reduce high sodium content of pickles.
- Seasonings – pickles will taste good without any seasonings other than kombu and salt, but seasonings can be added depending on your preference. Commons seasonings used as a varieties are citrus peal, green perilla leaves, ginger, vinegar, red pepper.
1. Cut vegetable into bite size pieces
2. Pour salt equal to the 2% weigh of vegetable, kombu and desired seasoning together.
3. Let vegetable marinate for few hours.
By storing pickles in a fridge, it can last 2 to 3 days.