Very popular in Vietnam, do chua is a condiment of carrots and daikon that is both sweet and tangy. It’s a staple of banh mi sandwiches, but it adds freshness and crunch to spring rolls and pho soups. Do chua is also delicious with any Asian stir-fry! Although several recipes prepare it with vinegar, do chua is easy to convert to fermentation!
- Difficulty level: easy
- Type of fermentation: lactic
- Preparation time: 20 minutes
- Fermentation time: 3 to 4 weeks
This is an example of equipment, but you could use containers of your choice.
- 2 mason jars of 500 ml (2 cups) with wide mouths.
- Airtight lid (recommended)
- Glass weight, or Viscodisc (recommended)
- Airlock (optional)
- 500 gr of carrots *
- 500 gr of daikon or radish *
- 4 teaspoon sea salt
- 3 teaspoon white sugar
* Note: the daikon / carrot ratio can be adjusted according to your preference. In Vietnam, daikon is mainly used, since carrots are more expensive.
- Peel the carrots and daikon if desired. Slice your vegetables with a chef's knife, a julienne peeler, or a mandolin.
- Place the carrots and daikon in a bowl with the salt and sugar.
- Massage everything with your hands for a few minutes, until the vegetables start to exude water.
- Transfer to a glass jar, in small batches, compressing the vegetables each time with your hand or with a pestle. The liquid produced should submerge the vegetables.
- To prevent the vegetable pieces from rising to the surface, use a glass weight.
- Close the lid without tightening it too much, in order to let the pressure escape during fermentation.
- Place the jar on a small plate to collect any excess liquid.
Leave to ferment at room temperature for 3 weeks (or more). Remove the inner weight and discard the carrot pieces that float to the surface, if there are any.
Taste the do chua, which should be crunchy, slightly sweet and tangy.
Store for 1 year or more in the refrigerator.
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