Kimchi: Fermented Fabulousness

Question: Kimchi. Good? Gross? Both?

Answer: Both!

Ok, I’ll admit it. Kimchi on paper, as a concept, sounds completely disgusting. Fermented cabbage?! Ummm, Barf. In fact, as a little  kid, I went to  elementary school with a Korean girl. She was so sweet, but would sometimes bring Kimchi to lunch. It smelled so bad….like really bad. It smelled like old, garlic, garbage farts. Of course, because kids can be jerks, she was made fun of every time she brought it in, so eventually she stopped. Now, in retrospect, my heart breaks a little for her. A bunch of jerk, eight year olds kept that tastiness away from her, just because it smelled so rank.

Little did we know. Little did we know.

This is by far my FAVORITE Kimchi. It’s also a good “gateway kimchi” if you’re new to the kimchi ways.

Some of you might not know much about kimchi, so let me give you the low down. Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish. It’s made from fermented and salted vegetables such as cabbage, and radishes. It can be seasoned with spicy chillies, garlic, and sometimes even seafood. Part of its bad name sometimes comes from the fact that it was traditionally made by being buried in the ground in clay pots and “left to rot”. That’s at least how it was described to me the first time. Of course my reaction, was “umm hard pass.”

Look at all that crunchy, tasty goodness right there.

So much of the “normal” stuff we eat though is either fermented or created using types of bacteria, fungi etc. Knowing that, it’s not fair for us to give kimchi a bad rap because it’s fermented. Ever had cheese? Glorious cheese? Some super, crazy delicious cheese smells like stinky feet, but we gobble that down no problem. Poor kimchi. The world is cruel and unfair.

As someone who has a terribly sensitive stomach, kimchi can be  life saver for me. In fact, I was on a trip to California one time and ran out of my favorite shelf stable, probiotics and started to have some serious, what I like to call “vacation belly” kick in. I couldn’t find them anywhere, but went to the local grocery store and loaded up on some good kimchi. After about half a day of snacking on kimchi straight from the jar (and making all of my non kimchi lovers grossed out), I was back to normal. That bacteria in there that makes it smell so terrible, is so good for your gut. If you’re ever in tummy trouble, give it a try! I promise, you’ll thank me later.


So, however you eat it, straight from the jar like myself, with eggs, fried rice, ramen, or on a taco, your tummy and your taste buds, will thank you for it. Sometimes it can take a little time to find the right brand or flavor, but just keep trying. This brand, Choi’s is local to Portland and is totally my favorite.  If you’re feeling super sassy, feel free to try and make it at home! Oh, that’s a good idea for a post…stay tuned for that one. #leahsadventuresinkimchi

That’s it for today, my fellow tummy tamers. If you enjoyed this, make sure to give it a little “like” and follow for more soon. If you can’t wait, feel free to find me on social media like Pinterest, Instagram, or Facebook.

Until next time! Happy nom noms!








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