Tianjin Preserved Cabbage

Every once-in-a-while someone introduces me to something that I can’t wait to try and experiment with. Fish sauce was one of those things. Now, I don’t know what I’d do without it. Not only do I use it in the Vietnamese foods I prepare, but it also adds flavor to some of the foods I grew up eating (like chicken soup).
Recently my father-in-law came and stayed with us. He was more than willing to pass on his knowledge of Vietnamese foods to me. I learned so much when he was here!
One day we drove into the Asian market to get a few supplies. I got the things I knew I needed while my father-in-law shopped for some things he was sure I hadn’t tried yet.
One of the things he placed in my cart was a cute little clay crock with Tianjin preserved cabbage.
Tianjin preserved vegetable originated in Tianjin, China during a time of extreme poverty. Because of the lack of refrigeration, people learned how to preserve their foods in order to store them for long periods of time.
I love the clay pot that it comes in! =o)
When you open the crock, the first thing you notice is the piquant aroma of garlic. I know, the color doesn’t look very appealing…that doesn’t mean that it isn’t delicious!
Perhaps some people would be deterred from trying this because of the strong smell and unusual color/texture. But don’t let this stop you! Those of you who like to eat at Asian restaurants have probably already had this in your meal. πŸ˜‰
Like most Asian seasonings and condiments….you just need a little. πŸ˜‰

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