Monday, December 22, 2014

Daikon Radish Kimchi

I grew up eating Kimchi and I really love it.  But, I've been having trouble finding any without dried shrimp in it. I have a terrible allergy to shrimp, crab and lobster and it's been preventing me from enjoying something that I crave frequently.  So I have to make my own!  I'm particularly fond of Radish Kimchi as it is so crunchy.  I enjoy eating it as a side to rice and mixed into Korean Mung Bean pancakes too.

Kimchi was one of the ways that Korean people preserved their vegetables over the cold winter months. It is an amazing fermented food, like Sauerkraut, that's so good for you.  It's full of probiotics and has been show to kill the SARS virus and possibly other viruses too so it's something we should all be eating during the winter months. It's also got a high vitamin content and because it is made from vegetables in the Brassica family, is also considered an anti-cancer food.   

It's really quite easy to make and the only equipment you will need is a big glass jar. It can eventually smell and taste quite strongly of garlic as it ferments so glass is definitely the best way to go. I make mine not-too-hot and I add some Asian Pear to sweeten it a little bit naturally.  I also use Fish Sauce and throw in some other vegetables too, like a little bit of Napa Cabbage and Carrots to make the flavor more complex.  think it is good to eat after only one day.  If you haven't made it before, try this version. It's pretty mild as Kimchi goes and it is really delicious!

Daikon Radish Kimchi

3 cups peeled Daikon Radish cut into chunks (about 2 large Radishes)
1 cup Napa Cabbage stalks , cut into bite sized pieces
1 1/2 Tablespoons Salt
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1/3 cup Fish Sauce
2 Tablespoons Tamari
¼ cup Korean Chili Powder (more if you like it hotter)
2” piece of Ginger, peeled and sliced
8 cloves Garlic, sliced
¼ cup Green Onions chopped
¼ cup chopped Yellow Onion
¼ cup chopped Carrot
1 Asian Pear, peeled, cored and grated
1/4 cup water + more to cover Kimchi if desired

Put the Daikon Radish and Napa Cabbage into a bowl and add salt, mix to combine and let sit for 3 hours.  Then Mix together the Sugar, Korean Chili Powder, Fish Sauce and Tamari with the water and make into a paste.  Add in the Ginger, Garlic, Green Onions, Yellow Onion, Carrot and Asian Pear. Then add the Radish and Cabbage to the vegetable mixture and stir to coat.  Pack into a half gallon glass jar or several smaller jars and pack down.  Add a small amount of water to make a thinner sauce that nearly reaches the top of the vegetables and refrigerate.  Keep pushing down each day so that the vegetables eventually get slightly covered with juice.  Kimchi will get fermented over time and will smell and taste stronger. It can be kept for months if desired.

Five Element Analysis

Daikon Radish is one of the few Metal Element vegetables and the onions and garlic add even more so that element is covered. The Napa Cabbage, Carrot and Asian Pear bring in the Earth Element. The Korean Chili Powder brings in lots of the Fire Element. The Water Element is represented by the Salt, Fish Sauce and Tamari. And, the fermentation that occurs contributes the Wood Element. This then is a perfectly balanced food!  

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