Pickled Cucumber with Konbucya [きゅうり昆布茶の浅漬け]

Pickle_KyuriKonbucya_2

Summer is time for growing vegetables that can be turned into pickles. Well, at least I have that in my mind when deciding what to plant in my little garden. Hence, I am sort of doing experiments on pickling cucumbers at this moment. I played with the seasoning, the size of cucumber and the duration of pickling. The easiest, and well-accepted pickle recipe is this konbuchya pickle. Pickles made with konbucya is rich in unique umami from konbu, flavorful and easy to make. This time, I make my pickle with sliced cucumber but if you prefer chunky type, go ahead with it. 

Konbucya [昆布茶] is a mixture made with main ingredients ground konbu and salt. Obviously, it does not contain any tea component as its name suggested but Japanese drink it as tea. It is also and important seasoning in Japanese cooking,  rich in konbu umani and easy to use. Bear in mind that, konbucya is NOT kombucha drink! They are not the same thing. I have asked a few friends of mine here and none of them seems to know about kombucha drink.

Pickle_KyuriKonbucya_1

Ingredients:
  • 2 kyuri (Japanese cucumber), about 200 g 
  • 2-3 dried chili (small), cut into rings
  • 1/2 tsp konbu-cya
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1-2 tsp rice vinegar

Method:
  1. Wash cucumbers, cut 5mm slices and dry it under the hot sun for 1to 2 hours to dehydrate it. With this step, there is no need to soak it with salt solution to remove excess liquid from the cucumber.
  2. Put cucumber into a zip-lock bag, add in all other ingredients and mix well.
  3. Seal the bag, squeeze all air out if possible then keep in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours.
  4. Transfer to serving plate and serve it as appetizer.
Pickle_KyuriKonbucya_3

Notes:
  1. Don't worry, dehydrated cucumber will turn crispy after soaking with vinegar, super crisp. 
  2. If konbu-cya is not available, you can replace it with the konbu for making dashi and salt. Cut konbu about 5 cm of konbu into strips, and add about 1/2 tsp of salt. And, the pickle should be kept in the refrigerator overnight for the flavor (konbu) to release.
  3. For chunky pickle, the pickling time will be longer the specified in this recipe. 

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Next, I wanna share a look-alike photo. This tree is outside my boy's primary school, and it looks like this during spring. When my boy saw it for the first time (after it trimmed), he was very excited that he spotted an animal. Do you see it too?

Look alike?

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