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Dua Cai Chua - Pickled Lactofermented Mustard Greens

This is Vietnamese answer to kimchi. This lactofermented mustard green is a daily vegatable accompaniment to meat courses and provides a balance to any rich or fatty courses.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Fermentation time: 3 days
Total Time: 3 days 15 minutes
Course: condiments
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Keyword: dua chua, mustard green, pickle
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 45kcal
Author: Hong and Kim


  • kitchen scale
  • lidded container


  • 2 bunch mustard green trimmed with stem and leaves sliced in 2 inch segments
  • 1 yellow onion sliced thinly
  • 30 grams salt
  • 1 liter water


  • Wilt the mustard greens leaves in the direct sun until leaves wilt, about 1 hour. Cut and wash mustard greens. Make a 2-4% salt solution. We like it right down the middle at 3%, but test and use your preference. (for example, 1 liter or 1000 ml of water gets 20-40 grams of salt. Just submerge the mustard greens and onions in the solution, cover with lid and leave on counter in a warm spot such as by a window. We don't find the need to weigh it down, but you do need to rotate the greens every few days to make for even fermentation. Depending on the weather and ambient temperature it could take 3-5 days or longer to be done. The color will change from bright green to military green and the solution will slightly more viscous and have a pleasant sour smell. It should be sour but not bitter.
  • You can keep it on the counter but it will continue to sour. We like to store ours in the fridge to slow down the fermentation and keeps longer.


Any food safe plastic or glass container will do. The fermentation will go faster in hotter temperatures. You will need only as much water to cover your mustard greens, hence we do not list a set amount. You need to make 2-4% salt solution, depending on your preferences. When done with the batch, save some of the liquid to inoculate the next batch and it'll go quicker.


Calories: 45kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 11682mg | Potassium: 161mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 60IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 1mg
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