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All About Korean Kimchi Posted by on Apr 5, 2017 in Cuisine, Korean Culture, Korean Language, Vocabulary

When you think of Korean side dishes, what is the first one that comes to your mind? It is probably Kimchi made with Napa cabbage and red pepper powder. Kimchi is a traditional ethnic cuisine of Korea, and you will be surprised to know how many different kinds of Kimchi are available for you to try.

김치 (Kimchi) is a staple of Korean side dishes that goes with almost every Korean meal. Korean people have consumed 김치 over a thousand years, and during the winter months they used to store 김치 in clay pots and bury the pots in the ground. This method slowed down the fermentation process of 김치, so people could enjoy their 김치 throughout the winter months. Nowadays, most Koreans use a special refrigerator made just for 김치. It is called a 김치냉장고 (Kimchi refrigerator)






What is your favorite 김치?

You will be amazed to find out that there are over a hundred different kinds of 김치  beyond the Napa cabbage kind made with red pepper power and garlic. Depending on the main ingredients, regions, and seasons, 김치  has many different names and unique flavors. In this post, I will introduce you to the several variations of it that Koreans often consume with their meals.

  • 배추김치  is made with Napa cabbage. Not only the red and spicy kind that you are familiar with, but there is also a non-spicy Napa cabbage Kimchi called 백김치. literally means white in Korean. I like 백김치  because its flavor is mild and gentle on my stomach.
  • 파김치  is made with thin green onions or scallions, fish oil, garlic, ginger, and hot pepper powder.
  • 열무김치  is made with young radishes. It is popularly served as a side dish, and this  김치 is also a popular ingredient in a 국수 (noodle) dish and 비빔밥. (비빔밥 is a Korean rice dish that is commonly mixed with vegetables, hot pepper paste, and a fried egg.)
  • 오이소박이 is made with cucumbers. It is stuffed with 부추 (garlic chives), 당근 (carrots,) and 양념 (seasonings).
  • 깍두기 is made with diced radishes, and Korean people enjoy eating this 김치  with soups.
  • 동치미 is made in the late fall and is enjoyed in the winter months by many Koreans. Its main ingredient is white radishes and water. It has a mild and refreshing flavor.
  • 배추겉절이  is fresh and unfermented Napa cabbage 김치. Many foreigners think of Korean 김치  as a fermented food, but this one is made to be consumed when it is fresh. Korean people enjoy this 김치 with freshly cooked white rice.

If you are interested in reading more about 김치, please click the following link.


김치 is not just a 반찬 (side dish) to Korean people, 김치 is also an extremely popular ingredient in making other Korean dishes such as 김치찌개, 김치볶음밥, 김치전, and so on. I will introduce recipes that use 김치 as their main ingredients in my future post.

저는 백김치를 좋아해요. (I like white Kimchi.)”

무슨 김치를 좋아해요? (What kind of Kimchi do you like?)”

I would love to hear what your favorite 김치( Kimchi) is in Korean.

감사합니다! (Thank you!)

***Related Vocabulary***

  1. 김치 (Kimchi)
  2. 김치냉장고 (Kimchi refrigerator)
  3. 배추김치 (Kimchi made with Napa cabbage)
  4. 백김치 (White Kimchi)
  5. 파김치 (Kimchi made with thin green onions or scallions)
  6. 열무김치 (Kimchi made with young radishes)
  7. 국수 (noodle)
  8. 비빔밥 (Korean rice dish that is commonly mixed with vegetables, hot pepper paste, and a fried egg.)
  9. 오이소박이 (Kimchi made with cucumbers)
  10. 부추 (garlic chive)
  11. 당근 (carrot)
  12. 양념 (seasoning)
  13. 깍두기 (Kimchi made with diced radish)
  14. 동치미 (Kimchi made with white radishes and water)
  15. 배추겉절이 (fresh and unfermented Napa cabbage Kimchi)


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About the Author:Kyung-Hwa

안녕하세요? My name is Kyung-Hwa, and I am a native of South Korea. I am accustomed to both English and Korean languages and cultures, and I greatly appreciate and love both of them. I am passionate about learning different languages, and I have studied English, Japanese, and Spanish. In my spare time, I take joy in singing, playing the piano, and reading books. I also enjoy traveling around the world, meeting people, and embracing new cultures and languages...

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