Quick Recipes and Easy

Kimchi – The Perfect Health Food

Kimchi has been the keystone food of the Korean diet for thousands of years. Although there are many varieties of kimchi it consists mainly of fermented vegetables in brine with spicy seasonings. The most common seasonings include, garlic, scallions and chili pepper. Depending on the type of kimchi being made, other seasonings include ginger, onions, salted fish or shellfish as well as fruit or fresh seafood. The most well loved kind is the Napa cabbage variety.

Kimchi has a high concentration of dietary fibers. The fiber in kimchi helps to prevent and treat diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. It’s low in cholesterol, sugar, stout, while also being low in calories. Kimchi is rich in antioxidants like vitamin A, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), vitamin C, calcium and iron. Most types of kimchi contain ingredients like onions, garlic and peppers all of which have health benefits. Red pepper is one of the most prevalent ingredients of kimchi which has the hot tasting capsaicin. Capsaicin stimulates gastric juice in the stomach and helps aid digestion. Garlic strengthens the immune system and helps the body absorb vitamin B1. Ginger helps with blood circulation and increases the appetite. Since kimchi is a fermented food it contains beneficial bacterial cultures of L. acidophilus a probiotic or “friendly” bacteria found in yogurt. L. acidophilus improves gastrointestinal function, boosts the immune system and aids in the production of niacin, folic acid, and pyridoxine. Kimchi is total health food.

The following is a recipe for baechu (Napa cabbage) kimchi:

Ingredients

• 1 head Napa cabbage (baechu, wombok)

• ½ onion, thin sliced

• ¼ carrot, thin julienne

• ¼ radish, thin julienne

• 4 green onions, cut into 2 inches

• 2 tbsp minced garlic

• 1 tsp minced ginger

• ½ cup go choo ga roo (Korean chili powder)

• 2 tsp sea salt

• 1 tbsp sugar

• ½ cup sea salt (or any coarse salt)

• 1 cup water

• ¼ cup jeot gal (Korean fish sauce)

Instructions

1. Quarter the Napa cabbage, wash and drain.

2. Mix ½ cup sea salt (or any coarse salt) and 1 cup water.

3. Place cabbages in salt water and take out one at a time to get salt down.

4. In a container, add cabbages and pour salted water, set aside for at least 6-8 hours. (Overnight will be fantastic.)

5. The cabbage should be soft enough to bend.

6. Wash, drain well.

7. Mix together ½ cup go choo ga roo (Korean chili powder), 2 tsp salt, 1 tbsp sugar, ¼ cup jeot gal (Korean fish sauce), 2 tbsp minced garlic, and 1 tsp minced ginger.

8. Mix in vegetables to the chili powder mixture.

9. Take one cabbage; stuff in above mixture to an every layer. Try to fold in half

10. With 2 outer leaves, wrap the whole thing securely.

11. Place in an air tight container.

12. Let it sit on a kitchen counter for overnight.

13. Place in a refrigerator for 2-3 days.

14. Serve with rice.

Charles May is a Structural Engineer who likes Korean food. For more recipes visit his blog at koreanrecipesandcooking.blogspot.com/ koreanrecipesandcooking.blogspot.com/

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