Cabbage and Fennel

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This Fall season is the first time I remember getting fennel from David in 6 years as part of his CSA!  It is a treat and somehow it’s building up in my fridge. I think the small ones were daunting, but I trimmed the root away and used the greens in a tea with some mint from the back yard.  I’ve collected a few recipes that will make fennel a treat to use.  Here’s a cou cous side dish that also uses cabbage.  Risotto, warm salad that also uses carrots and mizuna, and an Asian salad that uses daikon and mizuna.

I’ve been waiting months to make kimchi, so I was so glad to see that giant napa cabbage in this week’s box.  It’s an acquired taste, but one foodies have grown to love.  I like making it myself because I can change the recipe to suit my family and it tastes much better than even the stuff from the Korean market.

First off, I use this recipe (halved for this week’s giant 4 pound cabbage) and make changes like chopping the cabbage into bite size pieces rather than leaving in big long quarters.  I half the amount of red pepper powder for the kids and leave out the fish products all together. I also half the salt and don’t bother doing the rinsing step.

1) Remove a couple of outer layers and toss chopped cabbage with salt and leave to wilt for a few hours, tossing every once in a while.

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2) Make slurry with water, rice flour, and sugar and boil.

3 )Mix slurry with julienned daikon and carrot, minced onion, garlic, ginger, pepper flakes, and green onion.

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4) Pour over cabbage and mix well, my hands now smell, in a good way.

5) Pack into glass jars pushing down and adding remaining juices to remove air bubbles and cover contents in liquid for anaerobic fermentation. Fold a rinsed outer leaf so it covers the top and holds the kimchi under the liquid and screw top on tightly.

6) Storing on a tray is a good idea as it comes alive and bubbles and drips.  Burp the lid a few times a day, leaving kimchi at room temperature for 1-3 days or put it right into the fridge to tang up more slowly.

I hope some of you try making kimchi, it’s so healthy and flavorful.  It’s great in fried rice, as a topping and eating with some rice and sea weed is a simple, common meal in Korea. Here are many more ideas.

 

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