Nyonya Vegetable Pickle
If you love pickles and condiments, this simple nyonya pickle recipe from Norman Musa is for you. Packed with flavours of Malaysia, this superb vegetable pickle is vinegary, spicy and crunchy.
When it comes to Malaysian pickles, I must say that the Nyonya kind are the best, partly due to the richness of the range of ingredients used. There is a good balance of vinegar and spiciness, and an array of beautiful textures and crunchiness from the vegetables and peanuts. You can keep this for up to 4 weeks in the fridge, but the longer you keep it, the more the vegetables will lose their crispness. Eat it as a condiment with rice.
|3 tbsp||vegetable oil|
|1 1/2 tsp||fine sea salt|
|100g||pineapple, cut into 2cm thick wedges|
|150g||peanuts, roasted and coarsely pounded|
|4 tbsp||sesame seeds (ideally 1 tbsp black and 3 tbsp white), roasted|
|2 tbsp||coriander seeds, roasted|
|For the spice paste:|
|1||stalk lemongrass (use the bottom part only)|
|10||dried chillies, soaked in boiling water for 10 minutes|
|4||cloves of garlic|
|2.5cm||fresh galangal (or ginger)|
|1 1/2 tsp||shrimp paste, dry-toasted|
|For the blanching:|
|2 tbsp||white sugar|
|1 tsp||fine sea salt|
|For the vegetables:|
|250g||purple aubergines, cut into 5cm strips|
|300g||white cabbage, cut into 2cm wide pieces|
|100g||cauliflower, cut into small florets|
|100g||carrots, peeled and cut into 5cm strips|
|100g||fine green beans, cut into 5cm pieces|
|500g||cucumber, peeled, deseeded and cut into 5cm long strips|
You will need a food processor.
1. Blitz the spice paste ingredients in a food processor. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over a medium heat and saute the spice paste for 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the sugar and salt and cook for 1 minute, until the sugar has dissolved. Add the vinegar and give it a good mix, then turn the heat off and set aside.
2. To blanch the vegetables, bring 600ml of water to the boil in a saucepan and add the vinegar, sugar and salt. Add the vegetables (apart from the cucumber – don't blanch this, as it will lose its crunchiness) and blanch for 10 seconds, until slightly wilted. Scoop out with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
3. Put the spice paste, the vegetables including the cucumber, the pineapple, peanuts, and sesame and coriander seeds in a glass bowl. Mix thoroughly, then transfer into a glass jar and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.