Susan Kims Cookbooks

Spend any time around Koreans and your appreciation and perspective for food will change. Making food, eating food, storing food, and sharing food seems to be the center of their lives, which is not surprising for a culture that also places the family unit in high priority. For this reason dining is elaborate and healthy.

The variety of natural food sources available to Koreans upon which to base their diet is due to the peninsular landscape of the country. For this reason the typical Korean meal includes, rice the staple of the Korean diet, fish and meats, like poultry and pork, vegetables and Kimchi, a fermented, highly seasoned vegetable dish that has been part of the Korean diet for centuries. The dishes are distinctively spicy due to the unique flavor combinations created by a few basic seasonings (red pepper, green onion, soy sauce, bean paste, garlic, ginger, sesame, mustard, vinegar, and wine) and Kimchi.

Kimchi is one of the most versatile and unique vegetable dishes in Korean cuisine and its presence in Korea is undeniable. Its unique aroma is unforgettable and westerners who are at first hesitant to warm-up to Kimchi often grow to love and crave it indefinitely. But the flavor of Kimchi is only part of its attraction. The process of fermenting vegetables, like Chinese cabbage, spring cucumber, and various types of root vegetables establishes a unique chemistry that stimulates the appetite and increases digestion. Also, the nutrients produced during fermentation (lactic acid bacteria and acetic acid) help to protect against cancer and germs. For these reasons, Kimchi is enjoyed year-round in Korea.

Unlike Western meals that incorporate 2-4 generous portions, Korean meals favor a broad selection of smaller side dishes like bean-paste or seaweed soup, broiled beef, fish, cabbage Kimchi, and steamed vegetables. The full course Korean meal, called Hanjoungshik, is comprised of grilled fish, steamed short ribs, and other meat dishes, vegetables, steamed rice, soup, and kimchi. Other popular meals include pulgoki, also known as Korean Barbeque.

The Korean style of dining is exciting and enjoyable for all who appreciate a variety of dishes and flavor combinations. And, in the words of many Koreans, their food is ‘good for your health’.

View Recipe by downloading pdf

About 50 years ago, during the Korean War, Korea received aide from America. Among other supplies, they sent over some corn meal. My mother didn’t know what to do with it at first and then made up this recipe. She died and I was not able to get this recipe from her. I remembered the taste and tried to recreate the cornbread. It turned out just like when my mother made it, when I was a child.

–Susan Kim, Lowfat Korean Cooking

The Origin of Kimchi

Kimchi Nutrition

Kimchi Prevents SARS

Kimchi juice is often shared between a bride and groom before a wedding.
When taking photographs, South Koreans often say the word "kimchi" in much the same way English speakers would use the word "cheese".
Most Koreans have a separate refrigerator to store kimchi. Kimchi is well-known for having a very distinguishable smell which can corrupt the odor and flavor of other foods.

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