Want to improve your gut health? Give Kimchi a go!
There is increasing evidence that fermented foods (like kimchi) can promote intestinal health and, therefore, support the immune system and anti-inflammatory responses. Kimchi is also known to enhance levels of good bacteria in the gut!
Maybe you've already heard that kimchi is great for you but you're still not sure how to incorporate it into your diet? Well, we've got some tips and recipes for you to get stuck into.
Dive right in
You could eat it on its own as a little afternoon snack - it is a little spicy, a little crunchy and a low calorie, high nutrient treat! (We recommend keeping an eye on the salt content though if you are eating large quantities).
Kimchi spelt pancakes with prawns & kale.
These Kimchi pancakes are inspired by the traditional Korean fritter-like, pancake: Kimchi-buchimgae (김치부침개). They are packed with spicy, immune-supporting Kimchi and high-fibre spelt flour. Serve them as a side dish or top them with prawns & veggies - as I have done here - for a decadent dinner.
Serves 2 people
(takes about 25 mins)
- 120g spelt flour
- 1tsp salt
- 1 egg
- 250ml ice water
- 150g kimchi, drained
- 2 carrots, grated
- 2tsp chives, chopped
- 1tbsp coriander, chopped
- 1 spring onion stalk, chopped
- 1.5tbsp rapeseed oil
- 165g prawns, deshelled & deveined
- 230g kale, chopped
- 120g sweetcorn, tinned
- Salt & pepper to taste
Preheat your oven to 80c
- Combine salt and flour and make a well in the middle. Add the eggs and water and whisk to a smooth batter. Stir in the kimchi, carrots, herbs & spring onions until well combined.
- Heat 1/3 of the oil over a medium high heat until a speck of batter sizzles when added. Add half the batter and evenly distribute across the frying pan.
- Allow the pancake to cook on a high temp for a minute then turn down the heat to a low-medium. Continue to cook until the pancake looks mostly done (it will still be a bit wet on the top but cooked and golden underneath).
- Flip the pancake and cook until the underside is golden. Place in the oven to keep warm and repeat the process for the second pancake (using another 1/3 of your oil).
- When both pancakes are ready and keeping warm, wipe out any crispy bits left in your pan and add the last bit of your oil to coat it. Fry your prawns for a couple of minutes and set aside on a plate.
- Add your kale to the pan with a splash of water and cook on a high heat for 2 mins until lightly sautéed.
- You can cut pancakes into bitesized pieces (as this is a traditional way to present them) or just leave them whole. Top your pancakes with the kale, sweetcorn & prawns and garnish with fresh coriander.
Oyster Mushroom Bibimbap
The beauty of a Bibimbap (a Korean rice dish) is that it is traditionally cooked at the end of the week, as a way to clear out your fridge. In the spirit of this tradition: feel free to use any leftover veggies or meat along side your kimchi and fry it up in the zingy Gochujang-spiced sauce.
Serves 2 people
(takes about 30 mins)
- 120g long grain rice
- 1/2 cucumber
- 2 carrots
- 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tbsp white sesame seeds
- 250g oyster mushrooms
- 120g kale
- 120g kimchi
- 2 eggs
- 1tbsp Gochujang
- 1tbsp soy sauce
- 1tbsp honey
- 1 lime, juiced
- Cook the rice using your preferred method.
- Grate the carrot and chop the cucumber. Mix these together in a bowl with the vinegar, sugar and sesame seeds. Leave aside to marinate.
- Heat a non-stick frying pan with a drizzle of veg oil. When hot, add your oyster mushrooms and cook on a high heat for about 5 mins until starting to soften and turn golden. Add your kale to the pan with a splash of cold water and cook for a further 2 mins.
- Mix the Gochujang, soy, honey and lime juice in a bowl then add this to your mushrooms and kale. Cook on high until everything is glossy and coated in sauce.
- Meanwhile, fry your eggs in a separate pan.
- Drain your carrots and cucumbers and serve in a large bowl along side your kimchi, rice, mushrooms and kale. Top with the fried egg.
With thanks to Sophie Nahmad for providing her recipe.
Image by: Sophie Nahmad
Recipe Developed by: Sophie Nahmad