Sunday, September 16, 2012


Hi from out of nowhere!

I is back.

Let's see how long this'll last LOL.  So, I've been craving something lately.  Something that I haven't made in a while.  Something time consuming to make, but oh-so-delicious.


What is it may you ask?  It is fermented, spicy vegetable goodness.  Yes, I said it, FERMENTED.  But it isn't as horrible as you may think. It's actually really good for you, and in Korea, it has been said to have great health benefits, much similar to the benefits of yogurt.

Kimchi ingredients waiting to be chopped up

The most common kind is made from napa cabbage, or as we call it in Hawaii, Chinese cabbage.  You take the cabbage, let it sit in a salt bath until its bulk is cut in half, but still crunchy.  This process takes about an hour and a half.  Every thirty minutes you turn the cabbage so everything is evenly salted.  After the bath, you rinse it several times.  For this Kimchi making extravaganza, I decided to make napa cabbage kimchi AND daikon, or radish, kimchi.

The salted cabbage, along with other vegetables added for crunch and color variety, such as carrot matchsticks, daikon (radish) and green onions, is then mixed with dried chili peppers, a paste made from ground onions, garlic and ginger, and "porridge" comprised of water, sweet rice flour (used to make mochi), and a little sugar.

Daikon and Cabbage kimchi mixed and ready to be put into jars!

STOP.......Fermentation time!

After everything's all mixed together, you pack it carefully into some jars, let it sit out on the counter for a day or two, then put it into the fridge for another few days to finish the fermentation process.

What's left as the end result is this spicy, slightly sour, vegetable goodness that accompanies almost any entree, but can even be so satisfying by just eating it with a plain bowl of hot, steamy rice!

Yes, the process seems lengthy and tiring, but I can promise you that the end result is worth it.

Here is the link to the recipe that I started off using.  Maangchi is a Youtube personality that shows the world how to cook delicious Korean food!  Her website and Youtube channel are both a great resource for those who would like to learn more about korean cooking.  I've tried many of her recipes with success!  If you decide to try and make some kimchi, this is a good recipe for older kimchi that you'd like to get rid of from a huge batch.  Kimchi stew.  OMGAH...sooooo good!  Soooo easy too!

I started a Word document to document my kimchi experiments.  I'm trying to come up with my own recipe that produces the perfect kimchi results that suits and satisfies my palette.  Maybe when it is perfected, I'll post the recipe???  We shall see!  Right now I have my batch sitting on the counter for fermentation.  I'll post results!

Happy Kimchi Making, and wish me luck on this batch!!!!

Fermenting on the counter.  OMNOMNOM.  Can't wait!

Friday, January 20, 2012

My love of food

Wait wait wait...I KNOW it's been a WHILE since I've fact, two years..teehee...but I felt like I needed to get inspired again. Lets face it: I get tired. I get lazy. After work, I just want to plop and do nothing...and I want to stop it! On this day off from work I decided to blog...about one of my favorite things: FOOD, and my memories with it.

Oh how I love food. I love to make it, eat it, and look at it. Often times my eyes are way bigger than my stomach.

Growing up, my mother cooked for us every day. It was her pure love of cooking for us that stuck with me long after she had passed away in 2006. I always appreciated it, and told myself that I wanted to be just as great a cook and baker as she was. We only went out to eat when it was someone's birthday, or for some other special occasion, and it was usually at this old chinese restaurant in town where the old lady who owned it would give us White Rabbit candies when we went to pay the check.

But it wasn't just my mom who cooked like crazy. Our whole family was into food. We always had some kind of occasion, holiday or excuse to get together and have these huge feasts.

New year's was my favorite. My mom would whip out our mochi making machine she had gotten from Shirokiya in the mall, and make fresh mochi on new years eve. I remember when the mochi was ready, we would dump it onto the tray, dust the working surface and our hands with potato starch and try to roll flattened balls of mochi out of the big hot glob of rice. We would eat it with kinako flour and sugar mixed together for the next several days.

We would also gather at my Aunty Honey's house and make laulau - a traditional hawaiian dish of pieces of pork, beef and butter fish wrapped in taro leaves and steamed to perfection. It was a family affair...everyone would gather and start an assembly line down the picnic tables in the downstair's kitchen. My uncle had (and still HAS) a big galvanized trash can he used specifically for cooking and steaming the lau lau in. The whole thing would be full of laulaus, enough for New Years, and left overs for everyone else to take home and freeze for the rest of the year to enjoy.

There are so many memories of family and food that come to mind, and it has become a big part of who I am today. I am always thinking about what I want to make next, constantly scouring the web for new recipes, and perfecting ones I already have tried. Whenever we go out to eat, or I make something for dinner, my boyfriend tries not to laugh every time I stop before we dig in as I take pictures of my food to post on my facebook. I want to share, not only my arts and crafts, but my love of food with the world. I'll be posting some pictures soon of some of the things I've made :)