Hello Friends! Today I have a unique and delicious recipe from Homemade Mommy, Kimchi (or kimchee)! It is Korea’s national dish, and there are hundreds of varieties made with a main vegetable ingredient such as napa cabbage, radish, scallion, or cucumber. One serving provides over 50% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C and carotene. Kimchi is also rich in vitamin A, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), calcium, and iron, and contains a number of lactic acid bacteria, among those the typical species Lactobacillus kimchii. Health magazine named kimchi in its list of top five “World’s Healthiest Foods” for being rich in vitamins, aiding digestion, and even possibly reducing cancer growth.
I first tried kimchi at a local korean cafe named Soy Teriyaki Bistro. The special I got was called Bibimbap. I immediately fell in love! I could probably eat this everyday! Now Kimchi can be used on just about anything. Whether it is your breakfast with scrambling eggs with kimchi, diced tomatoes, and mushrooms…or use it as a wrap filling or to top a baked potato. It is a great toping with lots of healthy bacteria and vitamins!
Here is how you make it! Here is how I used it to make Bibimbap!
- 1 large Napa cabbage
- ½ cup salt
- 1 Tbsp sweet rice powder (this might be labeled glutinous rice powder as well)
- ½ cup water
- 1 cup Korean red chile powder (coarse gochugaru)
- ½ cup fish sauce (make sure the only two ingredients are anchovies and salt for a true fermented version vs. one that includes flavorings like MSG)
- 2 Tbsp whole cane sugar (yes – sugar – this helps with the unique fermentation process of kimchi)
- 1 3″ knob of fresh ginger
- 1 daikon radish (200g) or 5-6 white salad turnips (this is what I used)
- ¼ cup yellow onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1 cup chopped green onions
- ½ cup chopped carrots
Prepare the cabbage: Wash and remove the leaves from the core of the cabbage. Place cabbage leaves in a bowl of heavily salted water and let sit for 4-5 hours.
Prepare the rice powder: Add one heaping Tbsp of the glutinous rice powder to a sauce pot with ½ cup water and, whisking continuously, bring to a boil. When it turns to ‘glue’, turn off the heat and continue whisking until it cools down a bit. I removed it from the pan and put it in a bowl in the fridge to really chill out a bit while I tended to the rest of the recipe.
Prepare the vegetables: Add the ginger, daikon radish, yellow onion, garlic to a food processor and process into a thick paste.
Prepare the red chile paste: Whisk together the prepared rice powder, red chile, fish sauce and sugar. Add in the processed ingredients to create a thick red chile paste.
After the cabbage has rested, rinse the leaves with water and chop into 1-2 inch pieces and set aside. –
Prepare the kimchi: I did the kimchi in two batches. Place half the cabbage into a large bowl and add half of the carrots and green onions. Using gloves, add half of the red chile mixture to the cabbage, carrots and green onions and work it so that every bit of cabbage is covered with the sauce. Press down into a fermentation vessel of your choice. Repeat with the second batch. –
Fermentation: After two days, check on your kimchi and pack it down again. Taste it to see how it is doing. Continue tasting and packing it down every few days. You can stop whenever you want after 3-4 days and put it into the fridge, but I like to ferment it for at least a month. –