Sunday, July 8, 2007

Kimchi Soup

I like spicy food. My girlfriend, on the other hand, is not a huge fan. But with this kimchi soup, the spice was definitely strong but not too strong that it scalds the tongue so that it can't taste anything anymore. The flavours of the kimchi, the onions, the ginger, the noodles, and the mushrooms really blended well together to make a really tasty soup. This soup is, however, best served in smaller quantities or on a day where you're really craving spicy food.

I've included below the recipe for making kimchi as well as the recipe for the soup.

1 Napa cabbage or 2 chinese cabbages
1 cup salt
1/2 gallon water
8 or more cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tsp fresh ginger
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/2 cup Korean ground red pepper OR cayenne and paprika
1/4 cup scallions

1. Chop cabbage into large strips and submerge in water with salt for 3 to 4 hours. What this does is draw some of the water out of the cabbage...something to do with osmosis or something like that...
2. Meanwhile, mix garlic, ginger, fish sauce, and red pepper together in a bowl to make a sort of paste. This mixture is basically a homemade and very inauthentic gochojang. So if you do have access to gochujang by all means go with that.
3. Once the cabbage is done soaking, squeeze out most of the water, layer the strips in a masson jar or other sealable container with the spice mixture and press firmly. There should be some liquid enough to disolve the spice mixture but not enough that it takes up all the room. The cabbage really has to be packed down.
4. Marinate 2-3 days and then serve as a condiment to Korean cuisine, in a stir fry or in my kimchi soup.

Kimchi Soup
1 medium onion, sliced
2 cups kimchi with liquid
1 cup cubed mushrooms
1 tbsp fresh ginger
4 cups or 1 litre of low sodium beef broth
handful of rice noodles OR white sticky rice
freshly chopped cilantro

1. Saute onion with a bit of canola or other unscented oil till translucent. Throw in kimchi, ginger and mushrooms and heat through.
2. Add beef broth and bring to a boil.
3. Once the soup is boiling, add the rice noodles if you choose to use these. If you're going with the sticky rice, simply serve a bowl of rice along with the bowl of soup.
4. Serve warm with cilantro and a glass of milk to put out the fire.

Hope you enjoy it!

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