Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Myoga Pickles

Myoga PicklesThe other day I received a small package from my good friends in NY. I was so delighted when I opened this package filled with a lot of myoga buds and other Asian vegetables, which I hardly find in Louisiana. Especially, myoga is very rare. This is my most favorite Japanese herbal vegetable.

Myoga, or Zingiber mioga, is native to Japan and the buds are harvested these days --late summer to early fall. They smell like ginger but their flavor is very unique and totally different from ginger. The taste is distinctive -- crispy, slightly spicy and addictive. Finely chopped myoga buds can be used as garnish on top of salads, miso soup, tofu and many other Japanese dishes. Also myoga tempura is a very popular dish in Japan.

Since I received lots myoga buds and I do not want to spoil any of them, I decided to make myoga pickles. Finely chopped myoga pickles can be also used as garnish. They can be preserved up to two to three weeks in a refrigerator. However, I am sure they will be gone into my stomach before I realized.

If you ever find myoga buds, please try to make myoga pickles!

300g –500g of myoga buds

Rice vinegar mixture:
1 cup of rice vinegar
1 cup of sake (rice wine)
1 tablespoon of sugar
A pinch of salt

Myoga PicklesDirections:
1. Place the rice vinegar, sake, sugar and salt in a pot. Bring to a boil. Then, turn off the heat and let the mixture cool.
2. Wash the myoga pieces very well. Boil water in a large pot. Add the myoga and boil them for 30 seconds to one minute. Drain them well.
3. Add the myoga in the rice vinegar mixture while the myoga pieces are still hot.
4. Fill the myoga along with the mixture in a jar/jars after the myoga cool down. Refrigerate over night and serve them with hot rice! They can preserved up to two to three weeks.

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