Chinese (Napa) Cabbage Recipes

Kimchi (aka Baechu Kimchi)


Kimchi (aka Baechu Kimchi)

Try this tasty Kimchi recipe by our "fermentation guru" Sandor Katz. Before refrigeration and food mass-transit, how did northern people eat fresh vegetables during the winter?

You guessed it, kimchi and sauerkraut! Traditionally, cabbage is grown late into the fall and made into fermented vegetables to enjoy over winter. Turns out our ancestors were on to something. Naturally fermented foods contain both natural probiotics, which nourish the gut, as well as pre-digested nutrients making them an integral part of a healthy diet... and they are yummy to boot!

Sea salt
1 pound/500 grams Chinese cabbage (napa or bok choi)
A few red radishes (optional)
1-2 carrots (optional)
1-2 onions and/or leeks and/or a few scallions
3-4 cloves of garlic
3-4 hot red chilies (Erica loves sweet peppers in here instead of hot - you can just substitute if you like)
3 tablespoons fresh grated gingerroot

1. Chop and soak the cabbage, radish, and carrot in a brine overnight. The brine should be made up of about 4 cups of water and 4 tablespoons of sea salt.
2. Prepare the paste (ginger, garlic, onion, hot/sweet peppers) - this can be easily done in food processor.
3. Strain the brine off of the cabbage.
4. Mix the vegetables and the paste together.
5. Stuff the vegetable-paste mixture into a jar and pour the brine over it to fill the jar. Cover with a cloth and rubber band and ferment at room temperature for 1-3 days. Then, store in the refrigerator.

-- Recipe adapted from "Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods" by Sandor Ellix Katz, pg. 47 (2003).


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