Monday, 28 November 2011

My friends Kim and Jang

I know I am abit late putting this up and I apologize from the bottom of my..well bottom :)
But I must tell you all about my friends Mr Kim and Mrs Jang! No they are not married to each other but they were very naughty 2 weeks back and got caught by me in the Kitchen with the mixing spoon.

In Korea anywhere from the 1st week of November to the last week is a time called 김장 ( Kimjang) Were anyone who is remotely a Korean woman gets in their cars drives 5 mins to the supermarket, and buy enough cabbage to feed a small African nation, a good 4 kg of garlic ( to keep their hubbies unwanted hands off them) fermented little shrimp ( because they can) super expensive Asian pears ( honestly sugar is just as good!) fermented anchovy juice/soy sauce ( smells vile) and weird arsed leafy greens which I have no idea what they are called in English... where the prices for radish and cabbage is dirt cheap but the price of dried chilli flakes shoots through the roof. Honestly it's ridonkulus the price of 1 kg of chilli flakes! I almost shat my daks when I saw the price at Emart! $20!( and that was the generic brand.. the others where from $25 - $52!!!) I was bloody glad I didn't have more than 5 cabbages at home otherwise I would have totally screwed my budget up!

That plus buying 새우젖 (funky fermented tiny shrimp thingees) and 잡쌀 (glutinous rice) was no meager feat either. Where is usually they are piss cheap and it's the fecking veggies that are bloody expensive!

And thus this is how Mr Kim and Mrs Jang got caught making out in my kitchen.. in a huge bowl .. need I say more.

Now I have never in my life EVER ( I need to stress this) attempted to make this much Kimchi without a) my MIL or b) any Korean woman. My hubby was as much use as tits on a bull but at least he helped me towards the end.

Our conversation went like this:

Hubby: Um .. what are you doing?
Me: I am going to make Kimchi.
Hubby: *Doubtful look on his face* "Are you sure you can?"
Me: Sure! I watched the cleaning lady make it at school on Thursday.
Hubby: Ah ha.. right I will go look up a recipe.
Me: I don't need a fecking recipe. I watched her, she told me what to stick in it.
Hubby: Right I know a good website.
Me: Oh piss off.

This was the Saturday morning. I went and got my beautiful leafy babies out and laid them on the ground

Now what you have to do its attack these little beauts with a huge knife, and cut them into halves, then halves again. So essentially quarters.

Now these little cabbages are dirty little minxes and needed a bath. So I gave them a good scrubbing and then rinsed them ( get as much excess water out of them as possible and then bang a WHOLE lot of rock salt over then and let them soak over night)

Then I went to sleep^^
The next morning they turned into well this

Now you have to rinse these again to get rid of all the salt and then squeeze the shit out of them. Because NO one likes runny kimchi! :) Well actually if you don't squeeze the excess water your kimchi is going to be swimming instead of "floating"^^

For the next stage you must make a '풀' kind of glue with the Glutinous rice as it binds all the chilli flakes and everything into a delish goo. It doesn't matter if the rice hasn't all dissolved into nothing-ness as long as the grains mush up when you rub them between your fingers.

Then you get some radish and grate it finely. I used 2 1/2 big ones because I have 5 huge arse cabbages.
To that I added a big bunch of 깢 ( weird arsed purple leafy goodness) and mixed it about.

I then blitzed up 1 kg of garlic and one Asian pear
( ok this is the second lot of garlic as I honestly didn't do enough the first time >.<) To the radish, leafy greens, garlic and pear I added about 3/4 kg bag of chilli flakes, 1/2 jar of 새우젖 without all the extra juice, a 1/4 - just under 1/2 c of anchovy fishy juice, hubby added a handful of salt ( eeek) about 3 tbsp of sugar and mixed it all around then added the rice paste

I was having so much fun that my son decided to join me...
( See Mum, I can even use my feet!)

Now there are no photos of me rubbing the paste all over, in and around the cabbage as my chief photographer ( hubby) was made to help^^ And my son constantly opened his mouth like a little chickadee and consumed a lot of freshly made kimchi. He was very happy.

Then you bundle it up and bang it in Kimchi proof plastic containers.

Now after slaving all day doing that I was informed that when one makes said kimchi one must also make 보쌈..
boiling of the pork
Searing of the pork

Our feast!!!!

Needless to say I drank soju and slept like a log!


  1. Oh...I really wanna make bossum!!!!

  2. You are a better 아줌마 than I! 보쌈 I can manage, but the market down the street is where I shall forever continue to get my 김치 from ^.~