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Miso Pickles

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

The salt and living enzymes of miso slowly work magic on the daikon to craft a pickle that’s supercrunchy and pleasantly full-flavored, with a different texture than vinegar pickles. Oh, and don’t let the use of mirin throw you. It’s just a sweet Japanese cooking wine available at many Asian markets. You can easily substitute carrots, turnips, or other radishes or firm root vegetables for the daikon, but I don’t recommend this pickling theater for more watery vegetables like cucumbers. Note also that this is a fermented pickle and therefore it should not be canned.

Makes2 cups

Cooking Methodpickling, preserving

CostInexpensive

Easy

Total Timea day or more

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Taste and Texturecrunchy, garlicky, tangy, umami

Type of DishCondiments

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ cup miso 
  • ½ pound daikon, peeled and sliced into ¼-inch half-moons (about 2 cups)

Instructions

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, stir the mirin and garlic into the miso to combine. Add the daikon to the bowl and, using a rubber spatula, fold it into the miso mixture, taking care to coat each piece of daikon completely Note that the pickle may seem pasty and dry; depending on your miso. Fear not; it will release liquid as it cures.

  2. Transfer the pickle to a clean wide-mouthed pint jar with a well-fitting lid, using your hands to help press the pickle into the jar. Label and date the jar, and allow it to sit at room temperature for 24 hours, then move it to the refrigerator for 4 days. Your pickle will now be ready to eat. Some people prefer to rinse off the clinging miso brine before eating, whereas I like its sharp saltiness all around. Be sure to try it both ways.

  3. Kept refrigerated, this pickle will last (and, in fact, get better) for up to 3 months.

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