Health Benefits of Kimchi in Korean Cooking

Kimchi means fermented vegetables, since many kinds of bacterial reactions contribute to build its flavor. The most important is lactic acid which aids digestion.

The pungent action of the chili pepper, the phyto chemical, capsaicin, stimulates the mucous membranes of the stomach. Organic acids control stomach secretions and fermentation produces vitamins B1, B2, B12 and nicotinic acid. Moreover, the vegetable fibers also activate bowel movement, solving constipation. This is the reason that kimchi was picked for one of 5 healthiest foods in the world by Health Magazine in 2006.

Kimchi gives special flavor to stews and sautéed vegetables. Try it on noodles, rice and tofu or make your own variations. It also gives very good flavor to kimchi pancakes and kimchi fried rice.

Kimchi Seasoning Recipe

This recipe is very easy to follow and once this seasoning is made, keep frozen to conveniently make kimchi. Divide seasoning into 1 cup batches for easy use.

Yields

  • 7 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 cup shiitake mushroom stock or water
  • 4 tablespoons sweet rice flour
  • 1 cup pear puree (any kind of sweet and soft pear), 7 oz
  • 1 cup onion puree (white or yellow onion), 7 oz
  • 1/2 cup Korean radish puree (3 1/2 oz)
  • 1/4 cup apple juice
  • 3 cups dried red chili pepper (coarsely ground without seeds)
  • 3/4 cup garlic, minced or food processed (5 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons ginger, minced
  • 1/2 cup sea salt

Preparation

  1. In a small pot, combine water and sweet rice flour. Mix well over medium heat, bringing the mixture to boil. Keep stirring with whisk until it turns into porridge (about 3-5 min). Pour into medium bowl and cool.
  2. In medium bowl, combine pureed pear, onion, radish, and apple juice, cooled sweet rice porridge and red pepper, and then mix until well blended. Let it sit for approx 10 min
  3. Add garlic, ginger, salt and stock or water to the mixture

 

Grandmother's Napa Kimchi

Yields: 1 gallon

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds Napa cabbage
  • 3/4 cup kosher salt
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 pound Korean radish, cut into 1-inch pieces (1/4 inch thick)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup kimchi seasoning
  • 1 cup stock

Preparation

  1. Cut the cabbage into 1-inch pieces and put them into large bowl
  2. Dissolve kosher salt in the water, and pour it over the cabbage. Using your hands, mix well. Allow mixture to sit for 4-5 hours at room temperature, tossing it from time to time.
  3. Discard the liquid that has leaked out of the cabbage and wash cabbage in water twice and drain well.
  4. Put washed and drained cabbages back into large bowl, add radish and sea salt and mix well with kimchi seasoning using your hand (wearing gloves is recommended) and pack tightly into a glass jar or plastic container. The kimchi must be covered with liquid while it ferments. If more liquid is needed, add water to the mixing bowl to get any remaining kimchi seasoning. Keep at room temperature for 1-2 days, and then keep in refrigerator.