White Kimchi

-Mix 6 cups water and 6 TBS coarse sea salt in very large bowl, stirring to dissolve salt.

-Take the outer leaves off of 1 large head of savoy cabbage and quarter it lengthwise with the root ends left intact.

-Place cabbage cut side up, in the water so that it almost covers cabbage.

-Put heavy plate atop cabbage, then top with iron skillet to weigh down to submerge cabbage in water. Set aside at room temperature 10 to 12 hours.

-Drain cabbage; discard water.

-Rinse cabbage under cold water.

-Mix the following together in the same large bowl:

4 cups water

1 TBS coarse sea salt

1 TBS sugar

1 tsp fish sauce

-Let brine stand until salt dissolves, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.

-Peel, core and chop the following into matchsticks.

1 Asian pear

1 daikon radish

1 carrot

-Cut 10 chives into 1 inch strips.

-Mince 3 garlic cloves.

-Finally mince a small knob of ginger.

-Mix Asian pear, daikon, chives, garlic and ginger in medium bowl.

-Lift each cabbage leaf and distribute some radish mixture between each leaf (about 1 to 1.5 TBS).

-Nestle layered cabbage in bowl of brine as tightly as possible.

-Put heavy plate atop cabbage, then top with iron skillet to weigh down to submerge cabbage in brine. Set aside at room temperature for 24 hours.

-Then refrigerate kimchi submerged in brine for 24 hours.

-Remove weight. Cover and keep refrigerated in brine for up to 3 weeks.

-To serve, lift cabbage from brine, allowing excess brine to drip back into bowl.

-Place on work surface. Cut crosswise into 1- to 2-inch slices.

Sweet-and-Sour Tofu with Summer Vegetables and Black Rice

From Vegetarian Suppers by Deborah Madison.

For the black rice, measure out 1½ cups black rice. Wash the rice in several changes of water.

-Drain the rice, then put it in a pot and add 2¼ cups water.

-Soak for 1 hour, then add a scant tsp of sea salt and bring to a boil.

-Turn the heat to low and cook for 35 minutes.

-Turn off heat and let the rice stand for 10 minutes to steam before removing the lid.

-Mix together the following:

2 TBS Balsamic vinegar

3 TBS tamari

A scant TBS light brown or maple sugar

½ tsp sea salt

-Chop up 2 slicing tomatoes or ½ pint cherry tomatoes so that you have 1 cup chopped tomatoes.

-Add the tomatoes to the vinegar mixture and set aside.

-Tip and tail several handfuls of green beans.

-Bring a large skillet of water to a boil, add some salt and the beans and cook until just tender/firm.

-Lift them out and rinse to stop the cooking.

-Chop 1 cube of firm tofu into cubes.

-Lower the heat on the skillet and add the tofu, cook for about 3 minutes, then remove to a plate.

-Empty the skillet and return it to the stove.

-Chop up the following:

1 TBS fresh ginger

1 onion or some summer leeks

1 large or 2 small summer squash

1-2 carrots and/or some bok choy

4 cloves of garlic

-Turn the heat on high under the pan and add 4 tsp roasted peanut oil.

-When the pan is hot, add the ginger and stir-fry 30 seconds.

-Then add the onion, carrot and summer squash and stir-fry about 5 minutes.

-Add the garlic, tomatoes, beans and sauce and then the tofu.

-Mix together ¾ cup stock or water and 1 tsp cornstarch and add it to the pan.

-Cook until bubbling and hot, then stir in some chopped cilantro. Serve with the black rice.

Curried Kabocha Soup

-Mince up 3 cloves of garlic and 3 TBS fresh ginger.

-Cut 1 kabocha squash in half, then peel and de-seed it.

-Cut it into 1 inch chunks.

-Heat 3 TBS butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat.

-Add the chopped garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, about 2 minutes.

-Add 4 bay leaves and ½ TBS crushed red pepper flakes; continue cooking for 1 minute more.

-Stir in the squash along with 1 tsp curry powder and ½ tsp sea salt, cook for 10 minutes.

-Raise the heat to medium-high, and add 2 cups low-salt chicken stock.

-Cover and bring to a boil. Immediately lower the heat, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring and mashing every 5 minutes.

-Add a 1-inch chunk of palm sugar or a TBS of honey and cook for 5 minutes.

-Add 1 fifteen-ounce can coconut milk and continue cooking for 10 minutes.

-Remove bay leaves from soup.

-Using an immersion blender or in batches using a blender, puree until smooth.


Indian Spiced Fennel Pickles

-Chop up 1 fennel bulb into 1/8 inch slices.

-Put the fennel slices in a 1-quart canning jar.

-Add the following to a medium sized saucepan:

A ½-inch piece ginger, peeled, thinly sliced

1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

½ cup white vinegar

1 tsp kosher or sea salt

2 TBS granulated sugar

2 TBS light brown sugar

2 tsp yellow mustard seeds

½ tsp coriander seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds

¼ teaspoon ground turmeric

1 star anise pod

1 cup of water

-Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve salt and sugar.

-Pour hot brine into jar and cover.

-Let cool, then chill.

-Store in the fridge for up to 2 months.


Pickled Watermelon Rind

-Using a vegetable peeler, remove tough green rind from 1 whole watermelon; discard.

-Slice watermelon 1" thick.

-Cut away all but ¼" flesh from each slice; reserve flesh for another use.

-Cut rind into 1" pieces. (You should have about 4 cups.)

-Combine the following in a large saucepan over medium heat:

1 serrano chile, thinly sliced, seeds removed if desired

1, 1" piece peeled ginger, thinly sliced

2 star anise pods

4 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp black peppercorns

1 cup sugar

1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar

½ cup water

-Stir to dissolve sugar and salt.

-Add watermelon rind and return to a boil.

-Reduce heat and simmer until just tender, about 5 minutes.

-Remove from heat and let cool, setting a small lid or plate directly on top of rind to keep submerged in brine, if needed.

-Transfer rind and liquid to an airtight container; cover and chill at least 12 hours.


Summer Squash Cake with Ginger and Hazelnuts

-Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

-Sift together the following:

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

¾ tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

-Stir in 1¼ cups sugar.

-Grate enough summer squash so you have 1½ cups.

-In another bowl, whisk together the following:

2 large eggs

½ cup melted butter

⅓ cup orange juice

2 tsp orange zest

2 tsp peeled and grated ginger root

1 tsp vanilla extract

-Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the flour and stir until just combined.

-Fold in ½ cup chopped hazelnuts and the summer squash.

-Butter and flour a 8x8 square pan.

-Scrape the batter into the pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes.

Choy Sum with Sizzling Oil

-Bring a large pan full of water to the boil.

-Add the following to the pot:

1 tsp of sea salt

1 TBS oil of your choice

-Cut the ends off of 1 bunch of choy sum.

-Tip in the choy sum and blanch for 1 minute.

-Drain and shake dry in a colander.

-Pile the choy sum neatly on a serving dish and pile the following on it:

2 spring onions, cut into fine slivers

A 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and cut into fine slivers

A small strip of red chili or red pepper for color, cut into fine slivers (optional)

-Heat 3 TBS oil (of your choice) over a high flame.

-When the oil is hot, ladle it carefully over the spring onions, ginger and chili.

-It should sizzle dramatically. (To make sure the oil is hot enough, try ladling a few drops on first, to check for the sizzle.)

-As soon as you get a vigorous sizzle, pour over the rest of the oil.

-Dilute 2 TBS of soy sauce with 2 TBS hot water.

-Pour over the diluted soy sauce mixture, and serve.