Fried Kimchi

So I teased you in my previous post about my kimchi boggeum or fried kimchi. I usually make it with pork neck (Schweinehals) from my butcher, but as I was buying vegetables this week at the Demeter (biodynamic) stand at the Farmer’s Market this week, I saw these perfect mushrooms in front of me. I had to buy them. Since I am always on the look out on how to veganise Korean recipe, the mushrooms presented themselves as the perfect ersatz in this recipe.

Brown Mushrooms

I wash my mushrooms. I once saw on an Alton Brown show, the one where he experiments and explains the science behind food, the results to this often debated topic of “to wash or not to wash.” He did his test on the water content between washed and unwashed mushrooms. Guess what…the water content was the same!

Here are my washed mushrooms sliced.

Sliced Mushrooms

I also include tofu. My husband loves tofu, so I used a whole block. I used a fresh block purchased at my preferred Asia Shop. Slice.

Tofu Block

I would recommend using a cup and a half of very fermented kimchi. The taste of this aged kimchi is typically mouth puckering sour. Somehow, my anticipated cup and a half was reduced to less than a cup! (I think my older daughter Vera and husband ate some without my realising it.)  This picture is of less than a cup. Squeeze out excess liquid and drain. If your kimchi is not already in bite size pieces, chop it up.

Strained Kimchi

I saute the mushrooms with a clove or two of crushed garlic in lots of sunflower oil. I use sunflower oil since I can easily get an organic store brand bottle at most stores here in Germany. A couple of tablespoons will probably be necessary. Once the liquid evaporates, usually takes about ten minutes, add your drained kimchi. Saute some more.

Kimchi and mushrooms in pan

Saute for another five minutes. You want your kimchi to be fried, not steamed or uncooked. I add a small teaspoon of gochujang, but you can adjust according to taste: more for even spicier and less for mild.

I think I was really hungry. I garnished my dish with chopped scallions and sesame seeds before it was finished. Close up without tofu

Remember my earlier photo of my tofu block? I forgot to add it. I had gotten a distracting phone call from a fellow expat friend who is a neighbor. She is brand new to Germany and doesn’t know any German yet, so I had to talk her through a sticky parking issue in our building. Once I got off the phone, I tasted the fried mushroom and kimchi combination, and at this point, I had to make a declaration of love to my husband in order to not eat all of it then and there.

Garnished with Gim
I also topped it with gim.

I backtracked and added the forgotten tofu. I placed the slices on top of the whole lot. You just need to put a lid on and let the tofu steam through. Garnish with your scallions and sesame seeds and kim.

Tofu on top

My husband agreed that kimchi boggeum with mushrooms was a vegan success story.

Finished plate

(We ate it with rice mixed with barley and a fresh salad of radishes, scallions, red peppers dressed with soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seeds and garlic.)

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