Aktualisiert: Feb 11
The legendary Kimchi. This is one of our most popular ferments.
So what is Kimchi, exactly? Let's turn to Wikipedia for a definition: (1*)
"Kimchi, a staple in Korean cuisine, is a traditional side dish made from salted and fermented vegetables, most commonly napa cabbage and Korean radishes, with a variety of seasonings including chili powder, scallions, garlic, ginger..."
Kimchi has been around for a while, some few thousand years at least & there is a reason for that. One, it is delicious & two, it is also very healthy. Dr. Mercola in one of his articles quotes "The Journal of Medicinal Food" & lists some of the health properties of Kimchi (2*)
And Dr. Axe mentions these health benefits (3*)
1. Provides Probiotics that Help Improve Digestion
2.Helps Increase Immunity
3.High in Fiber
4. Low in Calories & Can Help Reduce Cravings
5. Provides Antioxidants that Can Help Fight Cancer
And this is all great, especially when it adds to the value of a product that is already delicious.
But not all Kimchi products are great. There are a lot of pasteurized "Kimchi" or Kimchi with added preservatives.
There are two ingredients that are traditionally used in making the Kimchi. Fermented fish sauce & Gochugaru. Gochugaru is a form of Korean pepper flakes that can vary is spiciness.
Being personally Vegetarian, we do not use fish sauce in our Kimchi. As far as Gochugaru goes, currently we also do not use it, as there's a real problem with getting a good quality product.
Quite a lot of Gochugaru that is exported, is of inferior quality & also even though the package says that they are Korean, they might actually be produced in China.
So till we find a product that we'll be satisfied with, we have a solution that works for us for the time being - our fermented Kimchi Paste (see the next blog entry)
To make our Kimchi, we start with these:
First we start with the cabbage:
The cabbage is washed & cut. And then we rub some unrefined sea salt into it & we leave it overnight, under some weights, to release the juices.
The next day, we drain the liquid & to rinse the salt out of the cabbage. Next, come the time for Daikon radishes & carrots:
And we also make the sweet rice flour + sugar paste:
To this we add our Kimchi Paste. The starch & sugar serve as food for the bacteria. Also the fermentation "eats up" that small amount of sugar, so in the final product, there is nothing left.
At this point we start putting all the ingredients together for coating with our Kimchi paste:
Next comes the mixing:
When it's all good mixed up
It is time to fill up our fermenters.
Then some stones & the lids
A note here: we use our regulars stone crocks & not the traditional Onggi because it is almost impossible to get good quality Onggi in Europe that would be in sizes over 10 L.
Some of the Kimchi goes into our Fermentation Jars to be the showcase pieces, so that visitors can see it.
Now, we let it ferment for a minimum of one month.
When the time is up, we transfer our Kimchi into our retail jars:
And when it's all done, it looks like this:
Here's a close up of our Kimchi jar & the label:
Kimchi can be used in many, many ways. The simplest one is as a side dish.
We use that Kimchi in multiple ways. Here are just some of the suggestions:
Kimchi - Avocado Salad with Mung Sprouts & Roasted Sweet Potatoes
On a sandwich with Hummus, Tomatoes & Avocado. Or it can be enjoyed as a side to many other dishes.
Ingredients: Napa Cabbage, Daikon Radishes, Carrots, Chives, Rice Flower Paste (Sweet Rice Flower, Water & Unrefined Sugar) & fermented Kimchi Paste (Sweet & Hot Peppers, Garlic, Onions, Ginger & Salt)
And here's a beautiful video about how the Kimchi making from one of our favorite YouTube channels (4*)
Disclaimer: All medical information in this post is merely information & not advise. If you need medical advice, please consult your doctor or other appropriate medical professional.