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Sunday, December 5, 2010

Kimchi Kimchi Everywhere

I am slowly becoming more and more Korean as the weeks pass by and I am not complaining.

I really love it here. I love the people, the food and the pop culture.

I suppose I am still in the 'HONEYMOON' period, but whats wrong with being in love?

Instead of going out on the town this weekend I decided to buy a Korean cookbook and create! I have shut myself in with my 'Learning Korean' workbook and recipes.

I chose 'cucumber kimchi' and 'radish' kimchi. It ended up taking about two hours for the whole process, but as they're fermenting sitting ontop of my stove I cannot help but feel a tinge of pride!

I went to my local grocery store with my recipe book and a little hope that I wouldn't mess this up too much. I needed radishes, garlic, ginger, cucumbers, green onions, red pepper powder, salt, sugar and a lot of time for chopping. I did each at the same time and it worked out to save myself some time. The radishes need to be rubbed with red pepper flakes and sit for a half hour before adding the salt and the cucumbers need to be cut and rubbed with salt to sit for an hour.

Here is the final product of my stuffed cucumber kimchi. I cut them into small sections from 2-4 in and then quartered them, being careful to not cut completely all the way to the end. After cutting, I rubbed them with salt and left to sit for an hour before stuffing them with a mixture of red pepper, garlic, ginger, salt, sugar, and green onions. In the last three hours since I have left it to sit there is a lot of brine at the bottom of the container that has started to collect. I think this is a success!
This is the final product of my radish kimchi. I cut the radish into bite size pieces, let sit for half an hour after rubbing with red pepper paste, and then mixed in the same recipe as the cucumber kimchi. The only exception was that the onion needed to be cut into long strips.

My nimble finger's work... I have a gnarly blister on my cutting hand. I prefer to call it a KIMCHI BATTLESCAR... I think it sounds more badass.

The red pepper flakes that have stained my hands a beautiful colour. Why did I not wear gloves? Well...no ones perfect!

Cleaning the radishes ready to start step two!
I can't believe the great sense of accomplishment I feel after making these. I have made a kimchi jigae that is still raved about so I am crossing my fingers these will taste just as good. It was great going up to the cash register at the grocery store - I had samgyupsal (pork for barbequeing) and all this stuff to make kimchi. The girl raised her eyebrows and said "Kimchi?" - I said "Yes!" proudly showing off my Korean Cookbook...she conveyed a mixture of pride and shock HAHA I looked like one hell of an EGG (white on the outside and yellow in the middle!).
Cooking session with Kim Yae Lin (my Korean name) over and out. xo