A disclaimer right off the bat: this is not traditional fermented kimchi. My recipe takes short cuts and isn't fermented so that it can be eaten shortly after it is prepared. It's flavorful and has similar ingredients of traditional kimchi, but kimchi purests are not likely to approve of this fast method. So be ye warned!
But, for me, I prefer recipes that don't require days of lead time. I don't do enough Korean cooking to warrant keeping a kimchi jar fermenting on my counter as you might see in Korean kitchens.
I have never been to Korea, so my only experience with Korean cooking has been at restaurants in the U.S., some more authentic than others. I have yet to eat at a Korean restaurant that didn't have a bowl of kimchi on the table. So, when I make Korean food, I do the same. This easy kimchi slaw recipe is standard with Korean meals at our house.
I learned to make a similar quick kimchi at a Korean cooking class taught by Naam Pruitt at our local Kitchen Conservatory. We made an entire Korean meal that we ate at the end of the class. Ms. Pruitt shared her quick kimchi recipe that could be made and eaten with our meal right away, skipping the long fermentation time that is normally required. I took her recipe, scaled it down, and simplified it further with the convenience of using pre-shredded, bagged cabbage slaw.
Traditional kimchi is normally made from napa cabbage that is cut into large chunks; they are usually bigger than bite-sized pieces. One of the things I prefer about my recipe is that the thinner shredded cabbage slaw I use is easier to eat along with other foods. I like to grab a few shreds of kimchi with my chopsticks along with some Spicy Pork, Beef Bulgogi, or rice. The smaller cabbage shreds are more manageable in Korean tacos and sandwiches, too. I've had others around my table say they prefer my kimchi to the traditional kind; although, admittedly they are not kimchi purests either.
If you'd rather make more traditional kimchi that ferments for a few days, here's an easy recipe from TheKitchn.com.
Nutritional Information (per 1/4 cup): 18 calories, .1g fat, 0 sat fat, 437mg sodium; 107mg potassium, 3.8g carbs, 1.3g fiber, 2.0g sugars, .9g protein; Weight Watchers SmartPoints: 1
Step 1. Assemble the ingredients
Step 2. Place cabbage in shallow dish and sprinkle with salt. Toss to combine. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes; toss again and let sit another 30 minutes. Transfer cabbage to colander, and rinse with water for 1 minute to remove excess salt. Drain well.
Step 3. Peel and grate the daikon radish on the large holds of a box grater. Traditionally these radishes are cut into matchsticks for kimchi, but it's quicker and easier to use a grater. These shreds blend in well with the size of the cabbage shreds.
Step 4. Chop a green onion--use the whole thing, both the white and green parts.
Step 5. Mince the garlic.
Step 6. Peel the ginger by scraping it with the back of the spoon; then mince it (I use a microplane).
Step 7. In a small bowl (I use a 1-cup measuring cup), combine red pepper powder, fish sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, and sugar; stir well to make a paste.
Step 8. In a large bowl (I use a 2-qt. measuring bowl), add drained cabbage, daikon radish, green onion, and red pepper mixture. Stir to combine.
Step 9. Transfer the mixture to a pint jar or other 2-cup container. Cover and refrigerate until served. It's best the next day, but sometimes I don't plan ahead that far and serve it right away.
Done! Definitely faster and easier than making Kimchi the traditional way.
SERVE KIMCHI with Korean tacos, sandwiches, bibimbap rice bowls, or as a side with any Korean meal. This kimchi is always on the table with my other Korean recipes:
view on Amazon: small serving tongs
Make it a Yummy day!