The Kimchi Kitchen
So what’s all the fuss ...or should we say fizz... about kimchi?
Well first and foremost, kimchi is delicious! It’s salty, spicy, crunchy, tangy, good for you and super versatile – perfect on its own or with a vast array of dishes from all around the world ...did someone say kimcheese toastie??
This ancient Korean side dish comes in hundreds of forms, but essentially its salted and seasoned vegetables, usually cabbage and radishes, which are pickled and fermented for at least a couple of weeks. The longer it ferments, the higher the healthy bacteria count and the more sour it becomes.
And herein lies the real drawcard of kimchi - its health properties! Due to the fermented nature of kimchi, it’s a wonderfully healthful probiotic food source great for gut health and high in anti-oxidants, some even claim it has anti-aging properties!
In its simplest form kimchi is made from cabbage, radish, garlic, ginger and gochugaru (Korean red chilli pepper flakes), so this plant based beauty is generally vegan friendly, however sometimes the seasonings can include jeotgal (salted seafood) or fish sauce so it’s always good to check the label. Other flavourful additions can include spring onions, sesame seeds, dashima, herbs, eggplant, cucumber, lotus roots, greens, pear and sometimes sugar for a hint of sweetness. The recipe possibilities are endless and change from maker to maker!
However traditional or fancy the kimchi, it’s all about finding the one you like best and then putting it on pretty much everything! Think dumplings, stir fries, soups, pancakes, pizza, sandwiches, rice dishes, eggs ... or just eat it straight from the jar! Kimchi is one of those rare things in life that is really enjoyable and brilliant for you!