You may be thinking…what is Kimchi? I know that’s exactly what my parents asked me when I was talking to them about incorporating more fermented foods into their diet. I know I thought the exact same thing once I started researching and incorporating more fermented foods onto Jeff & my own plate.
So let’s dig in a little on what kimchi actually is before we get to this Paleo Taco recipe.
What is Kimchi?
Kimchi is a mixture of fermented vegetables, with one vegetable being most prominent.
Kimchi is Korea’s national dish. For as often as Jeff & I eat salad (which if we’re home is pretty much every day sometimes twice a day), Korean’s eat kimchi.
The main vegetable used to create kimchi commonly consists of Napa cabbage, daikon radish, scallions or cucumber. There are many, many different varieties created based on the main ingredient chosen along with the seasonings and other vegetables paired with them to flavor the kimchi. Common spices include peppers, garlic and ginger.
The prefix “lacto-” is often used when referring to fermentation. The terms “fermentation” and “lacto-fermentation” are often used synonymously. “Lacto-” does not refer to lactose (the sugar present in milk) rather in this case it refers to lactic acid bacteria. This is a broad category of bacteria that produce lactic acid as plant material decomposes and ferments. (Source) In other words, it’s the good bacteria!
Benefits of Kimchi
Kimchi is a natural probiotic. When consumed it can reduce body weight and blood pressure in the overweight and obese. For more information on the health benefits of kimchi refer to this and this article on Perfect Health Diet.
Making Your Own Kimchi
You can of course make kimchi from home however I’ve yet to give that a try. I once tried making a raw sauerkraut and it didn’t work out so well so I’ve yet to try that again however we have succeeded with our kombucha. If you’re interested in making your own kimchi I would recommend trying this recipe from Perfect Health Diet or the Spicy and Sour Kimchi on Mark’s Daily Apple. Both use Napa Cabbage as the main ingredient.
You may be thinking what am I going to do with a huge batch of kimchi? Don’t worry. Once you give it a taste, if you enjoy the flavor combination, you may just want to add it to everything you see. Just like making bone broth, once you have it available you automatically find a use for it. Even just to eat it all on its own. :)
Buying Kimchi: You’ve Got Options
Homemade kimchi is far superior to store-bought kimchi however if you chose to purchase a jar of kimchi (like me) rather than making your own, my favorite brand right now is Mother In Law’s Kimchi. More specifically I’m a huge fan of the Daikon Kimchi and that’s exactly what I used to spice up these fish tacos. I’ve also tried and highly recommend the Austin based brand Oh-Kimchi! but currently that is only available in the Austin area. Look for kimchi in any korean grocery store along with health food stores such as Fruitful Yield or even Whole Foods.
Paleo Tacos: Get to the Recipe Already
With this recipe I boiled the fish in bone broth rather than water to try and add a little extra flavor. The fresh sliced jicama adds a little crunch to the tacos and the kimchi adds a little extra spice. Instead of cutting the ends off your rainbow chard, slice it up and add it to the inside of your taco.
This is an easy recipe to throw together on a week night when time is of the essence. If you precook your fish on the weekend, all you need to do is reheat, dress and serve.
Paleo Tacos with Kimchi
- 1 cup beef broth, (optional)
- 1.5 lbs wild-caught white fish (I used Atlantic cod)
- 1 bunch rainbow chard
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 head jicama, peeled & sliced
- 1 cup daikon kimchi
- 1 lime
- fresh cilantro
- pinch of sea salt
- Pour beef broth into a medium-sized saucepan. Add water to fill three-fourths of the way. Place over medium heat. (Note: If you do not have beef broth, no worries, just use all water. The beef broth gives the fish a little extra flavor while cooking.)
- Use kitchen shears to cut cod into bite size pieces and add to the pot. Cook until fish is no longer translucent, approximately 7-12 minutes.
- Rinse rainbow chard under running water, remove extending stem (chop and add to the inside of the taco or discard). Place leaves on a plate.
- Using a slotted spoon remove fish and transfer to rainbow chard leaves.
- Top with a sprinkling of fresh minced garlic, sliced jicama, a healthy portion of daikon kimchi, fresh lime juice, fresh cilantro and a pinch of sea salt per taco. Serve with Cauli-rice.
- Enjoy! :)