- Food and Cooking
Kimchi Fried Rice for Lunch
Kimchi Fried Rice with Egg - Probiotics to Die for!
Probiotics are essential to good health (more about that later), and eating homemade Kimchi is a tasty and thrifty way to get them in your diet.
Kimchee fried rice is a great way to use your homemade kimchi. In addition to being good for you, the kimchi makes the fried rice taste wonderful (very hearty and filling). Add an egg and it's a complete meal.
So that's what I had for lunch today. I hope you try the recipes below, and enjoy them.
What is Kimchi?
Kimchee, one of the world's healthiest foods, is Korea's national dish. It's made of naturally fermented, pickled vegetables, most often containing cabbage and radishes. You can think of it as a Korean version of sauerkraut, but with a hot and spicy Asian flair. If you live near an area with a Korean population, you can buy kimchee at an Asian market. But it's really easy to make it yourself. It's usually made with Napa cabbage, as in this picture, but if you can't find any you can make it with regular green cabbage, as I did.
Photo used under Creative Commons from / ayustety
Kim chee is a great addition to fried rice, because it is so flavorful that it makes the dish very satisfying. Combined it with a fried egg and you have a complete meal, full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and probiotics. If you make the kimchee yourself, it's also a very frugal meal.
Prep Time: 5
Total Time: 20
- 1 bowl full of leftover cooked rice (about a cup and a half)
- 1 half an onion
- 2 scallions
- 1 green red or yellow pepper
- 2 T naturally fermented soy sauce
- 2 1/2 -3 T of Sesame Oil or Olive Oil
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Kimchee
- 2 eggs
- 1. Chop the onion, and pepper finely.
- 2. Chop the scallions, reserving the green parts for garnish.
- 3. My kimchee was already chopped, but if yours isn't, then chop it.
- 4. Heat two tablespoons of oil in large flat bottomed pan or wok. (This is approximate. It depends on the size of your pan, but you just want to coat it lightly so the vegetables and rice don't stick to it.) Put a small piece of onion in the oil, and when you start to see the oil bubbling around the test piece, you'll know it's hot enough, add the onions and the white part of the scallions.
- 5. Stir the onion frequently while cooking on high heat about five minutes, until it starts to get translucent.
- 6. Add the pepper and cook for about another minute.
- 7. Add the Kimchee, and stir until it's hot. (About another minute)
- 8. Add the cooked rice, breaking up the clumps with a spoon. Stir in the soy sauce. Heat until the rice is hot, about two to three minutes.
- 9. Taste and adjust seasoning. (Add more soy sauce, kimchee or rice, depending on how spicey you like your food.)
- 10. When the rice is hot, remove all the rice and vegetables from the pan and arrange it on two plates.
- 11. Heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of oil in the pan.
- 12. Meanwhile sprinkle the reserved chopped green onion over the rice for garnish, and clean up the mess in the kitchen.
- 13. When the oil is hot, cook the eggs, sunny side up until the white sets, and the yolk is just starting to set (about a minute or two). Season with salt and pepper.
- Top the rice with the fried egg.
- Eat immediately, breaking the yolk of the egg with your fork so that it forms a kind of sauce for the rice.
- Note: If you are making this just for yourself, you can use a separate small pan to cook just one egg, and leave the extra rice in the large pan. It's great heated up later.
I think homemade kimchi is best. But if you don't have time to make your own, or the idea sounds a little overwhelming, kimchi is so good (and so good for you) that it's worth buying some.
Fried Rice with Kimchee and Egg - the Finished Dish
Stir fry tastes better when made in a wok
You don't have to have a wok to make stir fried rice, but it will taste better and you'll be able to use less oil. This one is made of carbon steel, which means that it's lighter than cast iron, but you'll still be able to season it. (Seasoning is what gives food cooked in a wok it's distinctive taste, and gives the wok a non-stick surface without all those nasty petrochemicals). For an added bonus, this well made item is produced in the USA.
How to Make Kimchi - An Easy Recipe - For vegan homemade kimchi use soy sauce and nori instead of fish sauce
Making pickled vegetables sounds intimidating if you've never done it. Kimchee is an easy way to start because you don't even have to worry about special sterile jars. Any container will do, and all you have to do is make sure that the cabbage is properly salted.
I like this video, because it shows you how to make kimchi using only one cabbage, instead of the huge batches that many recipes call for, and you can see how easy it is to make a small batch. She also gives you the correct ratios of salt and sauce per cabbage so you can make as much or as little as you want.
I used this recipe and procedure for my home made kimchee except that I didn't have Napa cabbage, Korean hot red pepper flakes. I substituted regular cabbage for Napa cabbage, locally grown hot green peppers for Korean red pepper flakes. Traditionally kimchee is made with shrimp or fish sauce, but I wanted vegetarian kimchee so I subsituted 4 tablespoons of naturally fermented soy sauce plus a little dried seaweed for the fish sauce. (I just crumbled up nori left over from making sushi.)
I also added julienned carrots and radishes to mine, and replaced the sugar in this recipe with honey. It came out great anyway. Mine was already bubbling after 24 hours, at which point I refrigerated it.
Benefits of Kimchee
Kimchee is a Korean version of chicken soup, reputed to prevent everything from the common cold to yeast infections. The American health magazine, "Health" calls Kimchi one of the world's five healthiest foods. Koreans have been making and eating naturally fermented kimchee since the 7th century, so it isn't some new fad. It's high in vitamins A, B, and C, and full of good bacteria called lactobacilli, and fiber. Some studies show that it may even prevent cancer. It's also worth noting that, PSY notwithstanding, Korea 's obesity rate is only 3.5%, which is the lowest in the OECD. (Looks like PSY has been skimping on his kimchee.)
Kimchee is also easy to prepare. Once the vegetables are mixed with the spices, you just stuff them into a clean container, make sure they are covered with brine, seal the jars, and you're done. I use recycled glass jars, washed in hot soapy water. No sterilizing. (We want those bacteria. The salt and garlic will kill the bad ones, and leave us with the good ones). If you're making your own kimchi, do make sure not to fill the jars completely to the top, to leave room for the fermentation to take place.
The flavors are also much more interesting than sauerkraut, as a typical kimchi is hot, sour, sweet and umami, all nicely blended, so it makes a very satisfying contribution to any meal. The hardest part is the sauce, but even that's easy if you have a blender or food processor. Otherwise you can use a mortar and pestle, as Koreans traditionally did.
If you buy the sauce, all you have to do is brine the cabbage. Easy as pie.
If you're short on time, you can buy ready made kimchee sauce
Kimchee so good for you that if you don't have time to make it all from scratch, it's worth buying the sauce just to get started.
This is a flavorful but milder hot red pepper. Personally, I like milder peppers, rather than extremely hot ones so as not to overwhelm the other tastes.
More ways to make and use kimchi, including recipes that use other vegetables as the base.
Have you ever tried kimchee?
If you've eaten kimchee before did you, like it
After reading this lens, are you thinking about trying some?
Are you going to
The Connection between Probiotics and Obesity
Recent studies show that fat people have different sets of gut bacteria than thin ones, and that the bacteria belonging to the fat people may cause them to extract more calories from the same food than thin people do.
New studies on mice show that you can overfeed mice bred to be thin on a high fat diet and they'll stay skinny. But inject them with bacteria from fat mice, and you'll soon have a mouse obesity epidemic.
Probiotics encourage the growth of friendly bacteria, and discourage the bad ones. The best way to get probiotics is to eat foods that you ferment yourself, like homemade kimchi. (It's easy, cheap, and you can be sure the bacteria are live.)
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