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Jan 28

Fermented food: how to make kimchi

Posted on January 28, 2016 at 12:18 PM by Anastasia Ehlers

We are kimchi-obsessed lately at Eugene Rec. This ancient Korean tradition of preserving cabbage and other vegetables is a tasty, inexpensive (and low-cal) way to stay healthy this winter. Lots of anecdotes and our experiences suggest kimchi boosts the immune systems, lowers cholesterol, improves digestion and so much more. 

While kimchi is widely available in local Asian grocery stores, you may prefer to make your own – giving you control over the taste and ingredients. There are so many variations on this fermented food that it was tough to choose just one recipe, but here’s a no-fail version that our team member Raychel has perfected:

011916_Kimchi_webres

Ingredients:
1 large head Napa cabbage (about 3 pounds)
12 scallions, trimmed and cut into 2-3 inch lengths
1 daikon, peeled and diced into 2-inch cubes
2 carrots, peeled and diced into 2-inch cubes
½ cup Kosher salt
6-8 Tablespoons Korean chili powder (available at Eugene’s Asian markets)
8 cloves peeled garlic
3 inches peeled ginger, quartered
4 oz. can anchovy fillets in oil (drained, rinsed, and patted dry)

Directions:
Cut cabbage into 2-inch cubes and wash in a salad spinner or colander. Put cabbage in a large stainless steel bowl or pot with trimmed scallions, daikon and carrots. Then set aside. In another large bowl, create a brine by combining salt with 16 cups water, stirring until salt dissolves. Pour brine over vegetables just to cover. Then put a plate or other type of food-safe weight on top of the veggies to keep them submerged in the brine. Cover the container with a clean towel and let sit at room temperature for 8-12 hours.

Drain the vegetables (reserving the brine) and return them to the stainless steel bowl.

Then in a food processor or blender, combine the chili powder, garlic, ginger, and anchovies. Blend until a paste forms. Add the paste to the veggies and toss to coat thoroughly (wear food-safe gloves while doing this – the chili powder will dye your hands red for days).

Pack the mixture tightly into a half-gallon glass jar or ceramic crock. Pour in some of the reserved brine, pressing down on the veggies to make sure they’re covered with brine but not drowning in it. Weight veggies so they stay submerged in the brine.

Let the mixture ferment at cool room temperature away from sunlight for about a week, or to taste. You may notice bubbles forming – that’s okay – bubbles signal that fermentation is occurring. The final product should be slightly sour and flavorful. Then remove the weight, seal the jar with a lid, and put the jar in the fridge. The kimchi will keep in the refrigerator for several months – though we dare you to take that long to eat it!

While kimchi is delicious plain or on top of rice, we love cooking with it too! From kimchi pancakes to scrumptious soups, to quesadillas, it adds an extra flavorful punch to any meal.

Need more help making kimchi and other fermented foods? Don’t miss Eugene Rec’s Urban Homesteading Series this winter and spring, which features four classes called “Urban Homesteading: Fermenting, Sauerkraut & Kombucha”:
February 1, 6:45-8:45 p.m. at Campbell Center
February 6, 2-4 p.m. at Amazon Community Center
April 25, 6:45-8:45 p.m. at Campbell Center
April 26, 2-4 p.m. at Amazon Community Center 

Comments

KimChi Ha Noi
December 14, 2016 at 12:54 AM
how a great kimchi !
KimChi Ha Noi
December 14, 2016 at 12:55 AM
[url=http://shopkimchi.com/]kimchi ngon[/url]

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