Everyone's aware of Kimchi, the basic side or main dish of Koreans. Kimchi is a fermented, spicy, salty dish with seasonings and made of cabbage or other ingredients like Radish, Cucumber or may vary.
Traditional Kimchi is made of fish sauce and other sea seasonings but it can be made Vegan too. Kimchi is really healthy and can benefit from inflammation and other health benefits like cleaning the gut.
Kimchi can be eaten right after making and can be stored and fermented for a long period too. So here is a quick recipe for making easy Vegan Kimchi.
- 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds napa cabbage, rinsed
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- water, about 8 cups
- 1 tablespoon sweet rice flour, or glutinous rice flour
- 2/3 cup water
- 1/4 cup gochu-garu, Korean chilli pepper flakes
- 1/2 tablespoon red pepper flakes
- 4 cloves garlic, sliced
- 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and julienned
- 4 scallions, light green and white portions, sliced
- 1 Asian pear, shinko, diced into cubes
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce, use tamari if gluten free
- 1 tablespoon porcini mushroom powder, optional
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and julienned
- 1/2 cup julienned daikon, Japanese turnip
- 4 scallions, dark green part, sliced into 2-inch chunks
Brine the Napa Cabbage
- Thoroughly rinse the napa cabbage and remove any discoloured leaves.
- Cut the napa cabbage in half and then in half again, for a total of four quarters.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the kosher salt and 8 cups of water and stir until the salt dissolves.
- Place the cabbage in the brine with care. If there does not appear to be enough water to completely submerge the cabbage, top off the bowl with more water.
- Place a plate over the cabbage to keep it submerged in water. Allow the bowl to sit at room temperature overnight. Rinse and drain the cabbage.
- Cut each section of cabbage in half to create two long strips. Slice the strips into 1 1/2 to 2-inch pieces.
Prepare the Seasoning
- In a saucepan, combine the rice flour and 2/3 cup of water. Over medium heat, bring the water to a boil. To break up the clumps of rice flour, constantly stir the mixture. In 1 to 2 minutes, the mixture should begin to thicken. Allow the mixture to simmer for 1 minute before turning off the heat. You should have a thick, pudding-like mixture. Place the mixture in a bowl and place it in the refrigerator to cool.
- Transfer the rice mixture to a food processor once it has cooled to about room temperature. Combine the gochu-garu, garlic, ginger, light green and white scallions, Asian pear, salt, soy sauce, and porcini mushroom powder in a mixing bowl. Blend everything until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Place the napa cabbage in a large mixing bowl. Combine the carrots, daikon, and dark green parts of the scallions in a mixing bowl. To combine the vegetables, stir them together.
- Season the vegetables with the seasoning mixture. Rub the seasoning into the vegetables thoroughly while wearing gloves. You should wear gloves because seasoning stains and pepper spice can be too much for your hands. If you don't have gloves, place your hands in plastic produce bags.
- Transfer the kimchi to a sterile canning jar or mason jar. Pack the kimchi into the jar and secure the lid. Allow it to sit at room temperature for 3 to 4 days in a cool, dark place. During the initial fermentation period, DO NOT OPEN THE JAR. This exposes the kimchi to oxygen, which can lead to mould growth. Don't be alarmed if you notice juice and bubbles forming in the vegetables. That's exactly what you're looking for.
- Transfer the jar to the back of your refrigerator and leave it there for 3 to 4 days.
- Try the kimchi. If you prefer a sourer kimchi, keep it in the fridge for a few days longer. The kimchi will ferment further over time. Alternatively, serve it with your favourite foods!
Author : Saurabh Thapa