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Monday, July 31, 2017

Homemade Preserved radish/Chai Poh 自制菜脯



Back home whenever mom/grandma makes porridge/congee, there will definitely be a plate of preserved radish  omelette.

A lot of the preserved radish/Chai poh sold in the market are imported, if you read the label printed on the packaging, the ingredients listed include -- “traces of nitrates”, “E211 (sodium benzoate)”, “E975 (saccharine)” and many other ingredients that I can't even pronounce. It is just making one wonders what is the implication of those chemical stuff and how they make their ways into this traditional treat.

The Radishes sold in the Asian market were really fresh and tasty around end April/May this year, with 29 cents a lbs and plenty of cold/dry air and sunshine.
I can't help but to bring some home to make homemade preserved radish.

小时候妈妈或外婆煮粥的时候通常都菜桌上都会有一道菜脯煎蛋。菜脯/萝卜干是一个非常平民的食材,可以拿来做很多不同的小吃和菜肴。

市场上卖的菜脯/萝卜干大多是进口的,如果你看菜脯包装上列出的材料的话,就会发现市售的菜脯用了很多的化学添加物,多吃还真的对身体不好哦!

过去农耕时代,菜脯是萝卜盛产时把萝卜腌制起来方便保存的一个做法,我想既然过去可以在家做菜脯,现在当然也可以在家自己制作菜脯罗!

四五月时我们这里的亚洲超市萝卜打折,一磅才两毛九。而且四五月的天气很适合制作菜脯,所以我就买了十几磅的大萝卜,自己制作好吃的菜脯。



Ingredients:
12 lbs/5500 g Fresh Radishes
165 g of Sea salt

材料:
12 磅/5500克 的 新鲜萝卜
165 克 的 海盐



1. Clean and cut radish into 5-6 inches in length and 1-2 inches in width, do not need to peel the skin of the radish, preserved radish with skin on will be crunchier and have better texture.

2. Spread cut radish pieces out on a flat bamboo colander and place under direct sunlight for one whole afternoon until radish pieces become soft.

3. Take the radish in door in the evening and rub 1/3 of the salt on all the radish pieces, leave them overnight with some heavy stuff pressed on them. This is to help drawing the water content out of the radish.

Note: I used a stock pot full of water for this purpose, you can use anything that is heavy, make sure you cover the radish with a piece of clean plastic sheet before placing the heavy object on it.

4. By the next morning, you’ll find that the radish have released a lot of water, remove the heavy object and throw away the water.

5. Spread the radish out again on bamboo colander and place under direct sunlight for a day. Bring it in at night and rub 1/3 of the salt in again, cover with clean sheet and place heavy object on it to release water.

6. Repeat the earlier steps of layering, salting (with remaining salt) and pressing on 3rd day, leave it again overnight to draw out even more moisture. This will be the last round of salting the radish.

7. We only need to place the radish under direct sunlight during the day and bring it in at night from 4th day onwards until the radish reaches desired dryness. Mine took around 7-8 days.

8. Clean and sanitized a large jar, place the preserved radish in it and press it down as much as you can, cover with lid and place the jar in cool dry place for 3-6 months before consuming.

1. 把萝卜去叶去梗后切成5-6寸长,1-2寸粗的长条,不需削皮。

2. 切好的萝卜条铺在一个竹匾上摆到阳光直照的地方晒一个下午至萝卜变软。

3. 把萝卜条收回取1/3的食盐搓到所有的萝卜条上,尽量搓匀。把搓了盐的萝卜条放到一个大盆里,盖上干净的塑料袋,然后加个重物压一个晚上。

注: 我用了一口大汤锅装满水压在萝卜条上。

4. 第二天早上把压出来的萝卜苦水倒掉。把萝卜条再次铺开在竹匾上放到太阳底下晒一天。

5. 晚上把萝卜条收回,取另外1/3的食盐搓到萝卜条上,再次取重物压一个晚上。第三天再次重复日晒、搓盐和重压的步骤。

6. 第四天早上把压出来的苦水倒掉之后拿出去晒晚上就不必加盐和压重物了。每天只需取出日晒,晚上收起即可。

7. 晒至萝卜干颜色变褐色,摸起来有点韧性,表面比较干爽即可。我晒了大约7-8天。

8. 把一个可密封的罐子洗净消毒风干之后把萝卜干装入罐子里,尽量压实后封罐收藏在干燥凉爽的地方3-6个月再食用。

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