Dishes with raw vegetables are pretty rare in Chinese Cuisine, I haven't seen very many of them. So when I saw this recipe in Fuchsia Dunlop's Land of Plenty(I know, yet another recipe from that book), I was intrigued. In addition, it used Daikon, one of my favorite ingredients. And yet, I bookmarked the page, and pretty much forgot about it. For some reason, I bought some Daikon before our trip to Vegas, and never hada chance to use it. I still am not sure what my intentions were with regards to that radish.....and when we returned, it was sitting on our dining table staring at me. I didn't want to waste it, but what to do, it was too hot to make a nimono(simmered dish). And suddenly I recalled, the recipe from Land of Plenty.
There was one big adjustment I had to make, I didn't have any Chinese pickled chili paste on hand, so I improvised using Sambal Olek and some additional vinegar. It turned out surprisingly good, and was very easy (as all my recipes are) to make. I've made this a few times since, once for the In-Laws who enjoyed it. A nice refreshing dish.........
So here goes:
Spicy Daikon Salad
1 Lb Daikon thinly sliced
2 tsp salt
4 tsp white sugar
1-2 Tb Sambal Olek or similar chili paste
4 Tb Chinkiang Vinegar
2 cloves of garlic finely minced or grated
2-3 tsp chili oil
2 scallions green parts only finely sliced
- Sprinkle the daikon slivers with salt, mix, and spread out in a colander. Let the daikon sit for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Before serving, combine the sugar and vinegar, whisk until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add chili paste and garlic, and mix well. Add chili oil.
- Shake the daikon to remove excess water, put the daikon on a plate, and pour the dressing over the daikon.
- Top with scallion and cilantro.
I tried making this dish using cucumbers, it turned out fine, but it just didn't have that refreshing bite that daikon has......