Friday, May 16, 2008

Pea Shoot Kimchi

I would love to believe that my recent obsession with all things preserved is something out of the primordial maternal portion of my brain. (Please let me live this fantasy.)

This party began near the end of citrus season. I adore citrus. I could eat a whole box of clementines in one sitting and still desire more. So, I made citrus preserves and pickles—lots of them. Slowly we are breaking out the various products. The orange pickle is ridiculously good, by the way.

More recently we have done quick pickles (ramps and green tomatoes), and then we moved on to kimchi. The first of these was ramp kimchi. These are so yummy that you will find yourself late at night standing in your pajamas eating them straight out of the jar.

And, then the kimchi party continued. The next kimchi was pea shoot kimchi. I have become ambivalent about peashoots. They can be silky and sweet, or else so tough you feel as if you might choke when eating them. The pea shoots we purchase recently were of the latter—all stems, abbreviated leaves. So, a long, slow sleep in bright red pepper seemed a fitting course for the shoots.

I have just begun to understand the complicated culture that is kimchi. As with Indian pickles, the variations seem endless. This empowered me to make my own variations. Ginger and garlic seem to play with many kimchis—but for my pea shoots, I went with only garlic. Why, well, I just did.

There are a few caveats—this is a fresh kimchi (even if that seems like an oxymoron.) As such, it doesn’t last forever. Second, pea shoots are apparently 98% water or something. I started with a nice large box of peashoots and finished with very little green in the kimchi. As such, this recipe below has more pea shoots and fewer carrots/daikons.

The result is nice—not ramp kimchi nice, but nice. The next step with this kimchi is to make it into soup. Come back and see.

As I would like everyone to eat kimchi (full of vitamin C and fiber), I am including this in Weekend Herb Blogging hosted by Gay from Scientist in the Kitchen and started by Kalyn from Kalyn's Kitchen.

Pea Shoot Kimchi
Wash and dry:

1 large bunch of pea shoots—you need much more than you would think

Salt the greens liberally with kosher or pickling salt

Julienne and then salt:
1 small carrot
3 inch piece of daikon

After 1 hour, drain all the vegetables and rinse the carrots and the daikon. Mix with the pea shoots.

Create a paste of

3 T ground Korean chilies
4-5 ramp bulbs
1-2 cloves garlic
2 T garlic
2-3 T minced scallions
1/3 cup sesame oil
1 T amchur powder

Massage the vegetables with the paste and reserve in a non-reactive container. Eat after 1 day.
And, soon I will post the recipes where I used my kimchi....but here is a sneak peak.


Y said...

What a great idea! I've only ever had normal cabbage kimchi before (which I love). I get those tough peashoots some times as well - they're so fibrous, I imagine I would probably be better off spitting them out and weaving them into placemats or something...hehe

Kalyn Denny said...

Sounds very interesting. I've only eaten kimchi once in a restaurant, and it was the basic kind made with cabbage, but I did like it.