Summer is the time to embrace your inner zucchini!
And make it into kimchi!
How exciting to see all the zucchini piled up high at the farmer’s markets around town!
Our local farmer’s market is one small block long with processed stuff––tempeh(!), wine, donuts––alongside fruits, veggies & assorted proteins.
I was standing next to a lady at one of the bigger produce vendors who was commenting to the man she was with about how the ‘pesticide free’ label seemed to be a ‘brand’. Erp. If she wanted sprayed veggies she could have gone up the road to the supermarket.
I rather think it’s a good idea to eat organic produce of a certain kind, you know the delicates like berries and lettuce. Anything that doesn’t come with a tough outer layer. Though I will buy organic bananas over regular bananas if they are almost equal in price.
What I was saying before I interrupted myself was that coming across these zucchinis in such plenitude inspired me to make them into kimchi. My treatment was straightforward: slice thinly, salt, mix in kimchi paste, and let ferment. And I am beginning to think almost any vegetable, root or leaf, can be kimchified.
But what about pears?
Zucchini kimchi ( 호박 김치)
1 lb zucchini (on the smallish side if you can get them)
sea or kosher salt
10 or more garlic cloves, pressed or minced
dried hot chile powder (I used a combo guajillo and chile de arbol)
rice wine vinegar or raw apple cider vinegar
ginger, grated and juiced
anchovy, fish sauce, eau de fish or fermented shrimp (optional)
honey or sugar, a tablespoon or so
2-3 scallions, washed and chopped
1. Wash and then slice your zucchini. I used a mandoline, but you can use your sharp knife too. Put in a bowl and toss with a few generous pinches of salt. Let sit (from 20 minutes up to a few hours).
2. Add chile flakes, garlic, vinegar, ginger juice, fish essence of choice (if using), and honey or sugar to the zucchini. Mix well. Add scallions and mix again. As for measurements, use according to your taste. So if you like extra spicy add more chile or if you prefer it fishy, add more fishy essence.
3. Store in a glass jar (I like Fido jars) and let ferment at room temperature for 2 days (or more if you wish).
4. Move into the fridge and let it continue to ferment for a few days or as long as you wish. The more you let it ferment, the more pungent it will get.