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Five flavours » Healthy, Inspired by..., Vegan, Vegetarian » Kim-chee, Bean and Peanut Salad

Kim-chee, Bean and Peanut Salad

Kim-chee, bean and peanut salad

I am starting a new category on Five Flavours called “Inspired by” because so much of what I eat is inspired by the amazing ingredients I’ve learnt about from all over the world, but doesn’t exactly fit under any authenticity labels.

This salad is inspired by Korean kim-chee, a wonderful probiotic, and Indian bean salads. This is the kind of salad I discover by accident when I am searching the kitchen for something I can make quickly for lunch. Here’s my thing, I pick something up from the cupboard or fridge, stare at it and think “What will make you into a meal?”. And then it almost always comes to me like magic! But, of course, you do need to keep a well-stocked cupboard with spices, sauces and other non-perishables for this to work well.

So today, while staring down the pot of kim-chee, I remembered how well beans go together with chillies and lo and behold there was a tin of beans hiding in my kitchen. Of course, you could use beans that you soak and cook yourself and you’d be far better off, but this was an emergency. When I need lunch, I need it now! Here’s what I did.

You need:

1.5 cups of cooked beans such as borlotti (or one tin)

1 tomato, chopped

1-2 tablespoons of roasted peanuts

1 handful of coriander (cilantro) leaves, chopped

1-2 teaspoons of sesame seeds

2-3 tablespoons of kim-chee depending on how spicy you like it

1 teaspoon of Chinese black vinegar or Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon of sesame oil

You do:

Just mix it all up in a bowl and wait a moment or two for the flavours to develop. You can add salt, but usually the kim-chee is salty enough not to need it.

Serves one hungry writer or maybe two or three as a side-dish.

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4 Responses to "Kim-chee, Bean and Peanut Salad"

  1. Marie says:

    It’s generally made with chilies but there are non-spicy ones, too. The kimchee you buy in Japan is not as spicy as the ones we buy here in NZ because the general palate over there is for less spiciness. You could try buying it in a Japanese grocery. It’s really just an accompaniment, though, so it’s sort of akin to putting some tabasco on your food or something. Well, OK, not in the quantities I eat. My friend over on Hella Delicious makes what she calls “White Man’s Kimchee”. Her recipe is here

  2. Vicki says:

    So, what makes the kim-chee so hot? Can you make it not so hot? Or is that the whole point….to have something that burns your lips off? I like what you did with this recipe and just using enough kim-chee to flavor the dish.

  3. Marie says:

    Thanks Laura. We are spoilt for choice with kim-chee here as we have a lot of Korean immigrants, but I would love to make my own some day. However, I know I’d be just like you and keep sneaking “tastes” before I should:)

  4. Laura says:

    Hi Marie:

    Looks scrumtious!

    I also make my own Kimchee – its much less salty and acidic than the store-bought varieties. And not all that hard to make, either. The hardest part is letting it sit until it is done and not tucking in too soon!


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