I’ve always had a thing for sweet kimchi. I like the spicy stuff too, but it doesn’t settle well for me. A restaurant near here makes great kimchis using sprouts and cucumbers. As I’ve been messing around with ideas in an effort to increase my vegetable intake (an area of my diet that is sorely lacking), I remembered this all-vegetable dish.
Unfortunately for me, a quick Google search soon proved that most people make a spicy, or pseudo-spicy, kimchi similar to the standard Korean variations.
So where to go from here? Among all of the recipes I found, I was able to glean the base items that go into a good kimchi recipe: vinegar, salt, veggies (usually greens and legumes), and spices. Below is my variation based on that summary. I also had to tweak the seasoning to suit what I happened to have in my spice rack.
- Use as much, or as little, of each vegetable as you wish. The main goal is that everything should be able to be submerged in the liquid. Below is simply what I used given the size of my dish.
- The last two seasonings were just what I had lying around that complimented the flavour I wanted. They may not work for your version, so feel free to substitute whatever seasonings work best for you. Chili peppers and other spicy seasonings are usually popular.
- Balance of sweetness to the bitterness of the vinegar is subjective. What I’ve listed is what made the balance I was looking for but it may be way too bitter still, so adjust accordingly.
- Cucumber kimchi does not keep long. Consume within a day or two of making it.
- 3 mini cucumbers, sliced into thin sticks
- 1 orange bell pepper, sliced into thin sticks
- 2 green onions, finely chopped
- 2 1/2 cups white vinegar
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- garlic to taste
- mustard powder to taste
- Pour vinegar into an airtight-capable bowl or jar.
- Chop veggies and add them to the vinegar.
- Add in sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring and tasting until desired balance of sweetness is reached.
- Add other seasonings as desired.
- Chill in fridge for at least 30-60 minutes.
- Serve in liquid, chilled.
I’ve usually had this served with the liquid to me but, from my research, it seems to be dependent on the cook’s preference. If you wish to remove the liquid, be sure to let your veggies soak for at least an hour, or overnight.
This dish is a great compliment to a hearty warm meal and it can be very refreshing in the warm summer days. I hope you enjoy!