In Japan, red and white are the colors of felicity, and dishes combining these are thought to be particularly festive. Here the deep orange tones of the carrot and dried apricot provide the “red, ” while the snowy daikon radish provides the “white.” This vegetable and fruit salad is a classic in its native land, commonly served at the New Year. It could easily accompany grilled fish or roasted poultry any time of the year, though.
Lightly salt the cut raw vegetables, each in its own bowl. Let the vegetables stand for 5 minutes before squeezing out and discarding all accumulated liquid. Combine the slightly wilted carrot and radish and toss in the apricots and lemon peel. Pour the sweet and sour sauce over the vegetables and fruit and allow the mixture to marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to 3 days if covered and refrigerated.
To serve, drain the vegetables and fruit of all excess sweet and sour sauce. For a particularly attractive presentation hollow out 6–8 lemon halves and fill them with the salad. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
© 1986 Elizabeth Andoh. All rights reserved.