Tradition: Kimchi-Giving

It’s takes an entire day – yes, a whole day to make a batch of Kimchi that will last my family 2-3 months depending on our appetite and craving for this crunchy, perfectly spicy, salty & sweet homemade kimchi.  

Since I started making my own kimchi back in 2007 when I first met Maangchi, my family has learned to eat a lot of complementing Korean dishes with my home-made kimch.  

I am proud that I make a good balance of flavor with the best ingredients I can find.  Every year I make more kimchi not just for our consumption but also to give and share to special friends who are always in line waiting for my freshly made kimchi.  

It is becoming a tradition.  Making kimchi and giving it away 😊.  Sharing food is one of my favorite ways to show love, thanks and appreciation to a friend or a family member.

Can’t you smell my kimchi?

Individually jarred and ready to give away Kimchi

 

I made Kimchi today!!!!

November is the usual month of the year that I make kimchi but because our supply wasn’t much last year, I had to make some again.  Today, I just made about 14 pounds of cabbages and 1 medium size daikon for my KKakdugi (cubed radish kimchi).  It took me almost 4 hours to make it and it was all worth it.

My recipe came from my very good friend Maangchi and I have been using her recipe for about 7-8 years now.  A few years back, I posted my Homemade Kimchi blog post, visit the page and enjoy more photos of how to make kimchi plus my personal recipe as adapted from Maangchi’s recipe.

I gave a few jars to some friends.  My family will be enjoying our family dinner with our freshly made kimchi!  Mmmmm.. I must not have lunch and get ready to feast tonight.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave me a message.  If you search my blog using search word “kimchi,” you will learn more on how to make your own.  Thanks for visiting my Blog.

“Kongguksu” – Soy Milk Cold Noodle Soup

Inspired by Maangchi, I wanted to create my own version of her Soy Milk Cold Noodle.  It was super easy and I loved it. Although my family doesn’t like cold noodle dishes that much, I personally enjoyed the nutty and creamy cold soup base.

This is a very easy and healthy & economical noodle dish perfect for the warm days of coming summer months.

For the recipe, you can visit Maangchi’s website.  She is the expert and I am just a fan.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave me a message.

IMG_4708

Wash Soy Beans and remove dead floating ones
Wash Soy Beans and remove dead floating ones
Soak for 10-12 hours
Soak for 10-12 hours
After soaking, wash well  with bare hands and scrub soy beans together to remove softened skin.
After soaking, wash well with bare hands and scrub soy beans together to remove softened skin.
After washing the soy beans well, cook for 10-15 minutes then drain.
After washing the soy beans well, cook for 10-15 minutes then drain.
Put soy beans, salt, mixed nuts in the blender
Put soy beans, salt, mixed nuts in the blender
Add water (2 1/2 cups of water to 1 cup of cooked soybeans) and some ice then blend until smooth
Add water (2 1/2 cups of water to 1 cup of cooked soybeans) and some ice then blend until smooth

Low-Calorie Dukbokki 떡볶이

Low-carb, low sodium, sugar-free, low fat, low-calorie, all the lows and frees in the world.  But nothing beats eating your favorite Korean spicy rice cake (Dukbokki).  The original recipe calls for Korean rice cakes made of glutinous rice flour.  For people who are on a low-carbohydrate, low-sugar diet, each bite of Dukbokki seem sinful but really, it’s not.  I’ve searched online that Dukbokki is naturally low in calorie if eaten in moderation.  However, for people like my husband, a small bowl is not enough 🙂

Inspired to cook a guiltless version of spicy rice cake for my husband, I created this recipe and because it does not use the original ingredients, do not expect the texture to be the same.  The best thing about it is it taste as great as my original Dukbokki.

My key ingredient is Konnyaku.  I first used this type of ingredient when I made sukiyaki, another family favorite.  I use a similar type of ingredient called Shirataki noodles.  Both are very low carbohydrate and very low calorie.  To learn more about these ingredients, please read related articles below this post.  One thing for sure, konyakku is guilt-free and it helps normalize blood sugar levels.  One of my favorite vegan substitute for meat.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pack of Japanese Konnyaku, thinly sliced according to your liking
  • 4 cups Water
  • 10-12 pcs. Large korean anchovies, head and innards removed
  • 3-4 pcs. Flat fish cake sheets, sliced diagonally
  • 1/4 cup Chopped red bell pepper
  • 3-6 tbsp. Hot pepper paste
  • Sliced green onions
  • 1-2 tbsp. Sweet rice flour
  • 1 tbsp. sugar substitute (stevia or splenda)
  • Sesame oil

Boil the water and dried anchovies in a shallow pan for 10 minutes.  Remove the anchovies (i leave a few pieces for texture) then add  the konnyaku, hot pepper paste and sugar substitute.

Add fish cake, red bell pepper and green onions.  Make sure to mix the sweet rice flour in cold water before adding to the pan.  Cook until the spicy sauce thickens according to liking.  Finally, add sesame oil.

Great eaten when freshly cooked!

I hope to hear from readers who will try this recipe.  It’s super easy and satisfying.

Related articles:

Konnyaku

My original Dukbokki

Maangchi‘s Dukbokki recipe

Homemade Kimch’i (김치)

Untitled

This is one of my favorite recipes and I’ve been saving to write about this on a special day like today.  But before I start, I want to thank Maangchi, my favorite cooking mentor for teaching me how to make this.

Not all people like Kimchi because of the strong sour smell.  I cannot blame them but a lot of other people (like me) love that smell anyway.  Years before, I honestly did not mind about what Kimchi is all about but when I started reading about Korean dishes, I became curious.

I first tried Kimchi at Korean restaurants as a side-dish.  It was appetizing to me because of the savory kick of spicy and sour sauce.  Then slowly, I appreciated the taste of the sauce and my palate started to want for more.

I only like the ones from the restaurant because it tastes more fresh.  I never had a store-bought Kimchi in our home and because of that, I realized I had to learn to make my own Kimchi 🙂  To me, it’s comforting to know what ingredients I have used on my recipes.  Then I am more confident serving food to my family knowing that they are eating homemade dishes by me.

I hope you enjoy learning this recipe as much as I did.  I will make a new batch this weekend 🙂

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 medium Napa Cabbages
  • 2 medium Korean Radishes (Daikon), cut into 1 inch cubes (leave some for the porridge, julienned)
  • Sea Salt
  • 1 big Onion
  • Ginger
  • 10-15 pieces of Garlic (I like to use a lot!)
  • Green Onions
  • Asian Chives
  • Hot Pepper Powder (pick a nice one that’s bright red)
  • Fish Sauce
  • Sweet Rice Powder

Untitled

Cut the cabbages in half, then slit each half through the core, but NOT through the rest of the leaves.  Soak each piece in cold water and liberally sprinkle some salt (about 3/4 cup of Sea Salt per medium cabbage), then set aside for 2 hours.

Untitled

Salt the diced radishes too and leave for 2 hours as well.  After 2 hours, turn the pieces of cabbage and radishes over so they are salted evenly. Leave for another 2 hours (Total of 4 hours of salting).

Prepare the porridge.  Put 1/2 cup sweet rice powder and 3 cups of water in a sauce pan and cook over medium high heat while stirring constantly.  Add 1/4 cup sugar then cool it down.  After 4 hours, wash the cabbages and radishes in a cold tub of water… wash 3-4 times making sure you soak it well in water to REMOVE ALL the salt.

Untitled

To the porridge, add 1 cup good quality fish sauce, 2-6 cups of hot pepper flakes (depending on your taste), 1 cup of crushed garlic, 1-3 tbsp. of minced ginger, 1 large minced onion. (I use my food processor to mince and crush the ingredients on this part)

Untitled

Untitled
Mix the porridge and continue washing the cabbages and radishes.

Take a look at my photos and see how I soak the cabbages in water to make sure all the salt is removed.

Untitled

Prepare the following:

  • 7-12 diagonally sliced green onions
  • 2 cups asian chives cut into 2 inches in length
  • 2 cups of shredded korean radish (left-over from the cubes that you used before)

Combine the porridge and the ingredients above.

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

Make sure the water from the cabbages drip off before starting to spread the paste on the leaves.  You will see on my slideshow how my paste looks like (it will make you salivate if you love Kimchi like me – LOL!)

Start spreading the paste on the leaves and leave some paste for your cubed radishes (Kaktugi).  Put your homemade Kimchi into an air-tight sealed container or glass jar.

Untitled

Untitled

Make sure you use a clean spoon each time you get a portion of your Kimchi when you eat. Also, press down on your Kimchi after getting your serving to make sure there is no air in between your cabbages. Eat this fresh or wait until it’s bubbly and fermented.

Put the Kimchi container at room temperature for a day then keep it in the refrigerator after the first day of fermentation. In a few days, you will see some bubbles and you will start smelling the sour Kimchi. That means it’s ready being fermented.

Enjoy your Kimchi!!!!

 

Related Articles:

MAANGCHI where I learned how to make Kimchi

 


Japchae Recipe (jabchae, chapch’ae, 잡채, 雜菜)

 

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Japchae Recipe“, posted with vodpod

 

I first tasted this as a side-dish at a local Korean restaurant here in Irvine. Then back in 2008 after downloading the podcasts at Maangchi’s website, I tried her version of Japchae and loved it!

My family loves noodles and we cannot live without it.  After eating all rice as our staple, we often crave for noodles for a change.

This recipe I am sharing is a recipe I got from the backside of a pack of my favorite Korean Vermicelli and I’d like to share it to you with a few of my personalized touch.

INGREDIENTS:

300 g. of Korean Vermicelli

1 medium Carrot

150 g. of Beef or Pork (you may adjust the amount)

1 medium Onion

5-8 pieces of Dried Shiitake Mushrooms

1 Egg (I use egg substitute)

1 bunch of Spinach (to me, the more the merrier!)

Olive Oil

Slice meat into bite sizes or strips and mix well with the meat seasoning (see below). Slice the re-hydrated mushrooms and season with soy sauce and sugar.  Wash and blanch spinach in boiling water, drain and squeeze the excess water.  Season with sesame oil and salt.

Slice the onion and the carrot into strips, stir fry with a pinch of salt.  Since I use an egg-substitute, just spread the mixture into a frying pan with oil on medium heat to make a thin flat egg crepe.  When done, fold and slice into thin long strips.  Stir fry the seasoned meat and mushroom separately on the frying pan.  Cook the dry vermicelli in boiling water for 6 minutes (or depending on the package instructions of the brand you are cooking).  Rinse in cold water and drain.  Boil 3 tbsp. of soy sauce, 1/4 cup water, 4 tbsp. of sugar (splenda), 1/2 tbsp. of sesame oil, 1/4 tsp. black pepper, 1/2 tsp. grounded roasted sesame seed on the deep frying pan and add the cooked vermicelli and stir well under low heat until it is shiny.

Mix all ingredients prepared separately.  Garnish with the strips of egg and some chopped green onions.

*** Meat Seasoning – 1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce, 1 Tsp. Sugar, 1 Tsp. minced Garlic, 1 Tsp. Sesame Oil, Black Pepper and Salt

More vegetables please Mommy!!!! (Buchujeon)





Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “More vegetables please Mommy!!!!“, posted with vodpod

 

I can’t believe it myself but you’re reading it right. My title says “more vegetables please Mommy!” My daughter is an addict! She loves this recipe so much she can’t get enough and will even ask for more and not leave anything for her Dad. 

This is Maangchi’s Korean Vegetable Pancake recipe called Buchujeon in Korean. You can see her recipe at her website but as always, I give my version a personal touch. 

Here’s what I do: 

INGREDIENTS: 

Small Korean Zucchini (or italian zucchini) 

5-8 Stalks of Green Onions 

1 Korean Chili (I use this because it’s not hot/spicy – good for kid-friendly recipes) 

1 Egg 

 A piece of small Carrot 

3 Garlic cloves 

Fresh Oysters (optional: or shrimp and try scallops) 

Chop and julienne the carrots and zucchini. Add in the thinly chopped green onions and korean chili. In a separate bowl, mix in 1/2 cup flour, salt and 2/3 cup water or sometimes I use a store-bought korean vegetable pancake mix and follow the package instructions. 

Chopped vegetables should be around 3 cups. Mix the vegetables with the batter and mix it up with your hands to spread evenly.Chop 3-6 pieces of fresh oysters and set aside. 

In a big heated non-stick pan, put some olive oil and spread the vegetable pancake mixture. Put your heat to medium. Top the raw side of the cooking pancake with fresh oysters and one beaten egg. Wait about 5-8 minutes before flipping the pancake. 

After 8 minutes, flip the pancake and add more olive oil (if needed) to make it crunchy (a cooking tip from Maangchi). Press the pancake down with a spatula and check once in a while to see if it’s getting cooked the way you want it to be. 

My secret dipping sauce that really makes my daughter eat this pancake a lot is a mixture of 1/4 cup rice vinegar, 2 tablespoon of light soy sauce and a pack of splenda. You can use sugar if you want but I don’t have that in my pantry 🙂 

Use other vegetables if you want to explore it! I’ve tried, sweet potato with green onions, chives and red peppers, I even tried bean sprouts with oysters as suggested by my husband. 

Enjoy and let me know about your version!

Making Mak Kimchi


Mak Kimchi
Originally uploaded by doyd74

I discovered making my own Kimchi back in 2008. Thanks to Maangchi, I am now a certified home-made kimchi maker. At first, it was a challenge, then after I made my first successful batch, it was addicting.

Using fresh ingredients, I am sure of the taste and quality of what I am making. Makes it perfect to create other kimchi recipes like kimchi pancake, kimchi soup, kimchi fried rice and a lot more!!! Funny, I got my husband hooked-up on eating kimchi. He says I have influenced him to eat a lot of food he never imagined himself eating (i.e., squash, oatmeal, etc.).

I have a collection of step by step photos on how I made this kimchi. Enjoy viewing!