Thursday, April 13, 2017

K is for KOREAN KIMCHI (KIM CHEE) #FoodForThought

My daily #AtoZ posts combine two concepts in under-300-words per day:
an appealing food choice along with thoughts that spring to mind.
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Let's get something straight, first. Although kim chee is a staple food in many Hawaiian homes, I have never eaten kim chee. I grew up eating cabbage in many forms, including baked with caraway seeds, sauerkraut with dumplings, beet salad,  and cole slaw. All delicious foods. But kim chee, in all its Hawaiian varieties, was not something I could bring myself to try . . . not once in 20+ years. 
At one time, kimchi recipes were jealously guarded by Korean families, the mother passing the recipe to the daughter with marriage prospects riding on the success of the flavor. Now, with commercial products on the market, this cabbage delight is readily available to everyone who finds pleasure in its unique blend of flavors.
Basic recipe for Napa cabbage Kimchi (kimchee):
  1. 1 (2-pound) napa cabbage.
  2. 1/2 cup kosher salt.
  3. About 12 cups cold water, plus more as needed.
  4. 8 ounces daikon radish, peeled and cut into 2-inch matchsticks.
  5. 4 medium scallions, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch pieces (use all parts)
  6. 1/3 cup Korean red pepper powder.
  7. 1/4 cup fish sauce.
This spicy dish is the equivalent of Korean soul food.
(Photo: Foodio/Shutterstock)
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Kimchi is of Korean origin. The Korean population in Hawaii settled mainly in Honolulu. So kimchi is a popular food staple here. I know people who eat this for breakfast. The amount of red pepper used determines how hot the sauce is. You either love kimchi, or you don't eat it. I think the fish sauce makes the decision for you.
The Hawaii Korean Festival 2017 is tentatively set for August on the Frank F. Fasi Civic Grounds,  650 S King St Honolulu, HI. The purpose of the Korean Festival is to share, promote, and raise awareness of Korean culture in the community.
Korean Festival 2016 Honolulu
Photo courtesy of Hawaii Korean Chamber of Commerce for

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  1. I have never had kimchi before but it looks delicious! Also love cabbage :)

    ¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*¨)
    (¸.•´ (¸.•` ¤ Good luck on the rest of your A to Z challenge

    Sylvia @ The Creative Life

  2. Thanks for visiting, Sylvia. I'm starting to look toward the top of the hill because "they say" going down is the easy part! So, after Saturday, it's all down hill, right?

  3. While I've always heard about it (as a part of Korean culture and dishes, invariably), I have to be honest... I've never had it.

    Maggie McAndrew and Kylee McGrane: Real Life Princesses of Compassion

  4. It is probably something we should try at least once, Roshan, but maybe next year!

  5. I didn't think of Korean culture in Hawaii. Their festival would probably be interesting.

    1. Jacqui, all the festivals in Hawaii focus strongly on food, which makes them an instant success.

  6. I have a good friend who's from Korea, and she was surprised I had ever eaten it, and she was even more surprised that I had it in Hawai'i. Evidently not everyone knows about the Korean population there. Every time I ate at a homestyle restaurant, they served it with the meal, regardless of which meal it was. Good stuff.

    1. You have a strong stomach, John! Although, I am sure your friend probably has a recipe that would have your ears smoking.


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