Easiest Kimchi Ever!!!

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Kimchi without chili powder. How does that sound?

Just in case you don’t know, kimchi is a traditional Korean dish that is made from vegetables mixesd with Korean chili powder, garlic, ginger, scallions and other spices. When I first came to America in 1989, not many people knew or even heard of it. But nowadays, kimchi is so popular that almost everyone knows about it. I think what makes kimchi unique is its fermentation process which makes consumption helpful for gut health. But, there are still people who hesitate to try kimchi because it is too spicy. If you are the one of those people, try this non-spicy kimchi.
I’m living in California now, but I was born and raised in Korea. Back then, kimchi and rice was our daily must-have food along with other dishes. I, like most Koreans, was addicted to kimchi; I never thought I could or would live without it. But when I was in my mid 40s, I started to have some health issues, and kimchi became a problem; to be exact, the problem was not kimchi itself but the chili powder. So, I decided to make my own version of kimchi that looks just like spicy kimchi but doesn’t taste spicy at all by using red bell peppers. In fact, traditionally, Korean kimchi used to be made without chili powder (the chili pepper was introduced into Korean cuisine after the 17th century), so non-spicy kimchi is more traditional. Kimchi is typically made with Napa cabbage, but I used green cabbage – it is much easier and quicker to make, and it can be eaten right away, like salad, or it can be fermented for about a week.

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Recently, I learned that there are two kinds of peppers: female peppers, which have four bumps, and male peppers, which have three bumps. While female peppers are sweeter and good for eating raw, male peppers are better for cooking. So, when you make my version of kimchi, try to find a female pepper – that way, you don’t need to put any sugar.

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Easiest Kimchi

Ingredients

  • 1 head (about 3 lbs) green cabbage
  • 1/4 cup coarse sea salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 red apple (Fuji), seeded and roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 half thumb size fresh ginger root
  • 2 tablespoons salted shrimp sauce (juice only)
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce (three crabs brand)
  • 3 stalks green onion, chopped

Instructions

  • Cut cabbage into bite-size pieces and put them in a large mixing bowl.
  • Separate the cabbage layers, sprinkle sea salt and water on top, and toss well to coat the cabbage.
  • Leave it for about 2 hours, tossing 2-3 times to coat the salt evenly.
  • Rinse the cabbage in cold water once, drain it, and set it aside.
  • In a food processor or blender, add onion, red bell pepper, apple, garlic, ginger, salted shrimp sauce, and fish sauce. Puree them until smooth.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the cabbage with the red bellpepper mixture and mix well.
  • Add green onions and mix lightly.
  • Transfer kimchi into an airtight container and press down with your hands so that the air is pushed out; kimchi shouldn’t get exposed too much air.
  • Leave it at room temperature for 1-2 days.
  • Put it in the refrigerator for about 5 days for better fermentation.

Note : If you want to make spicy kimchi, you can add 1/3 cup of chili powder.

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