How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Vegetables

How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜蕪 ぬか漬け

How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け
Nukazuke Report: Our nukadoko pickling bed started to get pungent, I knew it was time to pickle our first vegetables. I chose hinona, a traditional vegetable from neighboring Shiga prefecture. It is a very long and narrow turnip.

We hadn’t cooked hinona before but it is a common sight in Kyoto in the winter. Usually it is pickled in sweetened vinegar. I want to say that I have had it as Narazuke some years ago, but I maybe wrong.

Hinona is quite long so I softened them up with some salt first to get them to bend enough to fit in our pickle pot. I just washed them well and then sprinkled some salt on them and let them sit for about an hour.

Of ocurse, all the greens are pickled and eaten as well.

Hinona Turnip
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Hinona Turnip Detail
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

This is a very beautiful veggie and I am interested in learning other ways to cook it.

Day One: Burying the Vegetables

Bury Vegetable in Nuka
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Bury Vegetable in Nuka
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Bury Vegetable in Nuka
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Day Two: Mixing and Turning the Nukadoko
Mixing and turning the nukadoko is essential to prevent spoilage. It is required everyday. It takes less than a minute.

Mixing and Turning the Nukadoko
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Mixing and Turning the Nukadoko
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

Pressing Down the Nukadoko
How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Hinona Turnips 日野菜かぶ ぬか漬け

We are trying to figure out the Zen of Nukazuke and will post articles from time to time on our progress.

3 Responses to “How to Make Nukazuke: Pickling Vegetables”

  1. As a Buddhist priest I always offer some meditation to my shojin ryori students…

    Here’s a little Zen of Nukazuke meditation for you…
    When you mix the nukadoko and turnips take a moment to observe the wonderful colors that present and shift and fold; feel the mixture as the earth which has nurtured both the turnips and the rice grains; in the warmth you can feel the sunshine that ripened the green leaves and brought the rice grain to fruition; in the moisture you can feel the rain that fell upon the rice and turnip and gave them life; as you breath in and breath out in rhythm with your hands, you can feel your body relax….

    This is a great one-minute meditation that helps you to become more aware and focussed on what you are doing right in that moment, as well as relaxing your body and mind. In this way, you are really adding another dimension to your food that other people who share this food will also receive – it’s what makes Zen food tastes to good!

  2. Mora says:

    First, I would like to thank Kate Kodo Juno for the lovely Zen meditation. I may never think of vegetables the same way ever again.

    Second, you mentioned you are interested in learning other ways to cook the Hinona turnip. Last week we had dinner at a local Portland restaurant, open only a few months, by the name of Ned Ludd [www.nedluddpdx.com]. Most of their dishes are cooked in the wood-fired oven, which lends a delicate flavor-veil to the ingredients. My favorite dish of the evening was turnips in a light horseradish cream sauce. Western purple-top turnips where used. They were cut into wedge-shaped pieces and enrobed with a very light yet creamy sauce with only a hint of horseradish. The horseradish never overpowered the turnips, it was quite subtle, and the overall balance of flavors and textures was sublime. While decidedly not a Japanese recipe, I would encourage you to consider cooking a Western recipe with the Hinona turnips for a fun twist and a way to bring the two cultures together as if gently holding hands while strolling down the Philosopher’s Path.

  3. Steve says:

    Mora has a way of describing food that brings it completely alive. That’s why I call her the Foodie’s Foodie.

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