Vietnamese Daikon and Carrot Pickles (Do Chua)

Pickled carrots and daikon
Cookbook author Andrea Nguyen calls these salty-sweet pickled carrots and daikon "any day Viet pickles" because they're just that versatile.Zachary Zavislak

A jar of do chua ("sour stuff") adds color, crunch, and tang to banh mi. Daikon is classic but can be swapped out for purple turnips or slices of more-­colorful radishes. If the pickles turn stinky as they age, open the jar and let it air out for 15 minutes before using.

What You Will Need

Any Day Viet Pickle
Julienned carrots and daikon in a salty-sweet vinegar brine is the perfect quick condiment for grilled meat, sandwiches, or classic Vietnamese banh mi.
Yield: makes About 3 Cups
Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. fresh daikon, cut into 3x¼-inch strips (3⅓ cups)
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 3x⅛-inch strips (1½ cups)
  • 1 tsp. fine sea salt
  • ½ cups plus 2 tsp. sugar, divided
  • 1¼ cups distilled white vinegar

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, add the ­daikon and carrots; toss with the salt and 2 teaspoons of sugar. Set aside until you can bend a piece of daikon so the tips touch without ­breaking, about 20 minutes. Rinse the vegetables well with cold water, then drain, squeezing to expel any excess liquid. Transfer the vegetables to a quart jar.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir the remaining ½ cup sugar with the vinegar and 1 cup of water until the sugar is dissolved. Pour enough of the liquid into the jar to completely cover the vegetables, discarding any excess. Set aside the jar at room temperature for 1 hour, then use the pickles immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 1 month.