Korean cooking forum topics:
Can one use cooked vegetables, like brussel sprouts which are very hard uncooked, to make kimchi? Do all the veggies have to be raw?
Brussel sprouts are hard, so try steaming them for 5 minutes under “near boiling” water.
By cooking the vegetables, you are killing the lactobacillus bacteria that are responsible for fermentation, so you will get no fermentation unless you re-introduce the bacteria with other raw vegetables as part of the dish, or by inoculating it with already-fermented food, which is probably safer (and more tasty!).
Remember, the salting and the fermentation process will soften the food. If it’s super-hard and you absolutely must steam-soften it first, then I would suggest that you only cook it part way, make sure you add plenty of raw vegetable ingredients to the ferment, and if possible, add a tablespoon or so of food that has already been fermented (like some kimchi, dongchimi, or some dongchimi brine, etc.) This will inoculate the ferment with the good-guy bacteria that you need. Also, I would let the steamed vegetable come completely down to room temperature before you assemble it and put it down to ferment. Good luck!
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