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What is Kimchi and Where to Buy it?

2 mins read. Published on 15 Oct 21, Updated on 18 Sep 22.
What is Kimchi and Where to Buy it?
Learn about the classic Korean cuisine and the best places to buy it.
Table of contents

What is Kimchi?

Boasting health benefits, a complex flavour, and great versatility, it’s easy to see why kimchi has such a broad appeal! 

Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish which usually includes a combination of vegetables (such as napa cabbage and radish) and is made with a varying selection of ingredients (such as ginger, chilli, garlic, fish sauce and salt). The mix is then pickled and fermented and whilst fermentation was originally a method primarily used to preserve the food, fermented food is now often sought after due to the recognised health benefits of fermentation

What Does Kimchi Taste Like? 

Kimchi has a complex flavour that varies according to the recipe, differing according to ingredients and the length of fermentation. Flavour notes in kimchi are often sour, spicy and umami, making it a very versatile food complementing many dishes and can even be eaten on its own! 

Is Kimchi Halal? 

Whilst fermented food has many health benefits, one of the by-products of fermentation is alcohol, of which is not permitted in Islam.

However, according to Saeed Hayek, a quality and tecnical auditor at Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America, the alcohol produced by the fermentation process is not large enough to be identified as not halal. 

What are the Health Benefits of Kimchi?

Kimchi is a fermented food, making it a great probiotic. This good bacteria can help people to maintain a healthy digestive system, which can contribute to a strong immune system and good overall health. 

Where to Buy Kimchi? 

1. The Good Boutique 

The Good Boutique stocks Bottlebrush Ferments kimchi, with three flavour variations; ‘The Red One’, ‘The Green One’, and ‘The Hot Red One’, each one with it’s own unique delicious flavour.

Credits: The Good Boutique

Our favourite flavour is ‘The Hot Red One’, offering Bottle Brush Ferments’ extra spicy take on their best-selling kimchi, ‘The Red One’. ‘The Hot Red One’ has achieved the Great Taste 2020 Award and with it’s rich, spicy flavour, we’re not surprised why! It goes with a wide variety of dishes, but we recommend pairing it with meat, chicken, fish, salads, and if you’re not faint hearted... even other spicy foods! 

2. Holland & Barrett 

Holland & Barrett stock Biona Organic kimchi, which is also a suitable kimchi option for vegetarians and vegans.

Credits: Biona Organic

This kimchi is warm and spicy with a rich tangy flavour making it fantastic addition to many meals or a great side dish on its own. We recommend pairing it with salads, stir fries, rice, and noodles to add a warm, spicy kick to your favourite dishes!

3. Belle & Herbs Farm 

Belle & Herbs Farm kimchi is made using a traditional Korean recipe, method, and ingredients, offering an authentic Korean style kimchi that compliments a wide variety of meals such as rice, noodles, stir fries, and stews. 

Credits: Belle & Herbs Farm

Belle & Herbs Farm kimchi has been awarded the Great Taste 2021 Award, boasting a warm, rich flavour with a crunchy texture. This kimchi offers a spicy and sour kick that is a treat for the taste buds! 

4. Planet Organic

Planet organic stocks The Cultured Collective kimchi, with two delicious variations, ‘The Classic’ and ‘The Vegan Classic’

Credits: Planet Organic

‘The Classic’ kimchi uses an authentic Korean recipe, boasting a warm spicy flavour with Umami notes and a nice crunchy texture. ‘The Vegan Classic’ kimchi also boasts a delicious spicy flavour with moreish Umami notes, with the recipe adapted to make it vegan and vegetarian suitable. Both options compliment a wide variety of meals such as salads, noodles and stews, or can be eaten on their own as a side dish!

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