Category Archives: kim-chi

Kim-Chee!

I’ve posted this recipe in the past but not in quite a while. Today I tasted a new batch of kim-chee that has been fermenting for a couple weeks and it is–I have to say–on of my better batches. Anyhow, the recipe is below, but if you’d like to learn more about kim-chee, sauerkraut, and other fermented foods (how to make them and why they are good for you), read this post.


Kim Chi

(Korean-Style Sauerkraut) 

1 head Napa cabbage, cut into two-inch pieces

1 small daikon, grated

2 tablespoons kosher salt

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 small piece ginger, minced

1 small onion, minced

2 tablespoons chili paste

1 tablespoon sugar

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to a container that is wide enough to fit a few small plates inside it. Press the cabbage down and weight it with plates. Cover the container and leave at room temperature. After a day it should release enough liquid that it is submerged, if not, add a little salted water. After about 2 days small bubbles will appear, after about a week or so it will smell and taste distinctively sour. Taste it as often as you like and when the flavor is to your liking transfer the container to the refrigerator to slow its fermentation.

Urban Simplicity.

Kim Chi

I’ve posted a few variations of this recipe in the past, but what it comes down to is that kim-chi is a spicy fermented cabbage recipe not unlike sauerkraut  (but did I mention spicy). The above image may be a bit misleading because it is not the finished recipe, it is the ingredients that have just been mixed together prior to fermentation (beautiful isn’t it). In this heat it should be fully fermented in a few days, or at least by week’s end. The basic recipe is listed below, but really the ingredients are really up to you. If you’d like to learn more about fermented foods–via articles I wrote (yes, shameless self-promotion)–click here or here. I also recommend this book.

 
Kim Chi
(Korean-Style Sauerkraut) 

1 head Napa cabbage, cut into two-inch pieces
1 small daikon, grated
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small piece ginger, minced
1 small onion, minced
2 tablespoons chili paste
1 tablespoon sugar

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to a container that is wide enough to fit a few small plates inside it. Press the cabbage down and weight it with plates. Cover the container and leave at room temperature. After a day it should release enough liquid that it is submerged, if not, add a little salted water. After about 2 days small bubbles will appear, after about a week or so it will smell and taste distinctively sour. Taste it as often as you like and when the flavor is to your liking transfer the container to the refrigerator to slow its fermentation.
 
 

Anticipation

Yup…it’s that time of year again. Time to start thinking about the victory garden. That’s a savoy cabbage plant pictured above. Future food for my son and I. In a few months I plan on eating it. No, let me rephrase that. In a few month months, after I harvest the cabbage and some cayenne peppers from my front yard garden, I’ll make kim chi–or rather, combine the ingredients and it will make itself–and then I will eat it. 

The Miracle of Controlled Spoilage (or, the art of live foods)

Fermentation. That, of course, is what the title of this post is referring to. Every culture has their versions, and things you may not think of as fermented are in fact just that…beer, bread, yogurt, sour cream, buttermilk, wine, and of course all sorts of  vegetable pickles. My favorite is kim-chi, or Korean style sauerkraut. Fermented products are very healthy and easy to make…the most difficult thing, I think, is the wait; they can’t be rushed. The recipe for the above pictured kim-chi is listed below, and if you’d like to see it being made, click here. To read more about the history and health benefits of these incredible foods–with plenty of recipes–click here. And if you are interested a book on all things fermented, I recommend this book.
Kim Chi
(Korean-Style Sauerkraut) 

1 head Napa cabbage, cut into two-inch pieces
1 small daikon, grated
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small piece ginger, minced
1 small onion, minced
2 tablespoons chili paste
1 tablespoon sugar

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Transfer to a container that is wide enough to fit a few small plates inside it. Press the cabbage down and weight it with plates. Cover the container and leave at room temperature. After a day it should release enough liquid that it is submerged, if not, add a little salted water. After about 2 days small bubbles will appear, after about a week or so it will smell and taste distinctively sour. Taste it as often as you like and when the flavor is to your liking transfer the container to the refrigerator to slow its fermentation.