NUKA 糠 / ぬか (Japan): rice bran

Misao, my friend at whose house in Tokyo I’m staying, prepares side dishes with nuka, or rice bran, a byproduct of the conversion of brown rice to white rice. Rice bran is rich in fibre and nutrients. In Japan it is sold pretty much everywhere and is used to make a pickling bed (nukadoko) for vegetables. No Japanese meal is served without pickles.

Nukazuke are Japanese pickled vegetables. The vegetables are not pickled in vinegar, but in a fermenting mixture of rice brand, water and salt, to which ingredients like chilies, ginger or seaweed are added for taste. With tender loving care (the mixture needs daily stirring by hand and occasional extra water or nuka) the rice bran bed lasts for many years, during which it can be used to pickle all kinds of vegetables. I don’t know if nuka can be purchased in the Netherlands, but I will take some home to give to my culinary friends.

Click image to see a Japanese video how to make nuka and pickles.

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