Achara-zuke (pickles)


  • 150g lotus root
  • 100g burdock roots
  • 150g shirouri melon
  • 100g zuiki/imogara (roots of dried taro)
  • 20g kanpyo (dried gourd shavings)
  • 20g dried kikurage (wood ear mushroom)
  • 20g konbu kelp
  • Achara-su vinegar:
    • 200cc vinegar
    • 120g sugar
    • 50cc dashi stock
    • 1 red chili pepper

serves 4

Achara-zuke pickles are summer pickles, mainly pickled during the O-Bon holidays. The name comes from the Portuguese word "achar" for pickles.

Some people use carrots or hanafu, a flower-shaped wheat gluten cake. Odd numbers are considered lucky in Japan, so seven types of pickles are presented here.


1. Remove seeds from red chili, and slice finely.

2. Pour vinegar, sugar and dashi stock into a pan, and heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add (1), and leave to cool.

3. Remove the skin of the lotus root, cut into 3mm half-moon slices, soak in water, and boil.

4. Scrape the black peel off the burdock roots, and cut into 4cm pieces. Split thick parts into four, and thin parts into two. Rinse and boil.

5. Cut shirouri into halves lengthwise, remove seeds, and slice thinly. Rub with salt, rinse, and squeeze out excess moisture.

6. Remove the skin of zuiki/imogara by hand, cut into thumb-sized pieces, and parboil. Soak in water, and squeeze out any excess moisture.

7. Rub kanpyo with salt, rinse, and boil until soft enough to leave nail marks when pinched. Soak in water, and squeeze out any excess moisture. Cut into 5cm slices, and make a knot.

8. Parboil kikurage to reconstitute, cut away any root clusters, and slice into bite-sized pieces.

9. Sandwich soft parts of dried konbu kelp between a wet cloth to reconstitute, cut into pieces 1cm wide, 6cm long with scissors, and make a knot.

10. When the vinegar has cooled, pickle (3)-(9) in the vinegar for around 1 hour, and then serve in dishes.

Recipe source

Reprinted with permission from the book:

Recipes of Fukuoka

by Akiko Tsuda, Norio Matsukuma, Thomas Caton


ISBN 978-4-8741-5732-9


  • Order this book from (in Japan)
  • Order this book from Kinokuniya online store (in Japan)
  • Order this book from Junkudo online store (in Japan)
  • Find this book at English-language bookstores in Fukuoka
    • Maruzen tel: 092-731-9000
    • Kinokuniya tel: 092-434-3100
    • Junkudo tel: 092-738-3322
  • Or use the ISBN to order from your local bookstore.
Source: Recipes of Fukuoka
by Akiko Tsuda, Norio Matsukuma, Thomas Caton.
Copyright (c) 2009 by Akiko Tsuda, Norio Matsukuma, Thomas Caton. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

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