HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >

H Mart Store-Made Kimchi

fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 06:41 AM

I love the in-house made kimchi at H Mart. However, since they make it and sell it immediately, should I hold it for a few days at home to ferment? How long would you recommend?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. JungMann RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 07:48 AM

    H Mart has homemade kimchi? That's news to me. I've only seen Tobagi brand kimchi there which I usually find has the right balance of sourness and heat. After 2-3 weeks in the fridge, it is usually too sour to eat as banchan and I will use it for cooking.

    9 Replies
    1. re: JungMann
      ipsedixit RE: JungMann Mar 7, 2013 07:55 AM

      Many of the H-Marts in Southern CA have in-house kimchi selections, as well as other banchan options.

      A couple of the larger stores have selections that can sometimes be described as overwhelming.

      1. re: ipsedixit
        paulj RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 10:57 AM

        In my Seattle area store, they have the largest selection on weekends, arranged on a couple of long folding tables, with toothpicks for sampling. I like the young daikon version best.

        1. re: paulj
          fldhkybnva RE: paulj Mar 7, 2013 11:08 AM

          Indeed, I am familiar with the toothpicks as it's really the only thing I can't resist eating when offered for tasting in stores. Is the young daikon a version of kimchi or does that refer to the age of fermentation? I don't have much experience as you can tell.

          1. re: fldhkybnva
            ipsedixit RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 11:22 AM

            I believe paulj is referring to Moo Saengche.

            1. re: ipsedixit
              paulj RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 01:04 PM

              I was thinking more of this:
              http://www.maangchi.com/recipe/kkakdugi
              Kkakdugi
              (though this recipe is using cubed larger daikon).

            2. re: fldhkybnva
              paulj RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 11:25 AM

              young as in the size and age of daikon. The produce section sells these by the bunch.

              I haven't seen, in English, clear indications whether various kinds of kimchi, house made or otherwise, are aged or not. I suspect the Korean labels are clearer.

              Most of the variation in these sampling tables has to do with what is being pickled or seasoned, whether it be seaweed, daikon, garlic, peppers, etc.

          2. re: ipsedixit
            monkeyrotica RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 11:32 AM

            Virginia H-Marts have their own in-house kimchi, too. I used to prefer the older, more fermented kimchi, but I guess my tastes have changed. I liken the difference to that between a fresh, half-sour kosher pickle and one that's been left in the brine for a while. They're both good in their own ways.

            1. re: monkeyrotica
              fldhkybnva RE: monkeyrotica Mar 7, 2013 11:54 AM

              Thanks, the description is helpful as they are similar. I am not a big fan of half-sours so perhaps I'd also love the flavor of the more fermented batch. I'll give it a try and see if 1) I notice any difference at all :) and 2) which I like better or to use in different preparations? Kimchi is such a great food, don't think you can really go wrong

          3. re: JungMann
            fldhkybnva RE: JungMann Mar 7, 2013 08:42 AM

            They do at my local store in the Baltimore area. Many days there are lovely Korean women with big bowls whipping up ginormous batches of kimchi which they then sell in plastic tubs.

          4. ipsedixit RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 07:57 AM

            I don't wait at all.

            5 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit
              fldhkybnva RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 08:43 AM

              I love the fresh stuff but someone mentioned that it'd probably improve with some fermentation at home instead of eating it right after they make and package it. Perhaps I'll grab 2 tubs this time and hold one.

              1. re: fldhkybnva
                ipsedixit RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 10:40 AM

                I think "improve" is the wrong word here.

                I think "changes" is the more apt description.

                With time, and additional fermentation, the cabbage will certainly be more acidic, pungent and sour, but also less crunchy and crisp. Whether that is better or worse is really a personal preference.

                1. re: ipsedixit
                  fldhkybnva RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 10:43 AM

                  Yea, sorry that's what I intended to say as the fresh version is great. Thanks.

                  1. re: ipsedixit
                    j
                    joonjoon RE: ipsedixit Mar 7, 2013 07:55 PM

                    Same as new pickles vs. regular ones. I personally love love love fresh kimchi, I actually prefer it over sour...and it only lasts in the "fresh" state for a few days so it's always a special treat for me.

                    Heaven is a piece of fresh kimchi wrapped around a piece of pork belly.

                    1. re: joonjoon
                      ipsedixit RE: joonjoon Mar 7, 2013 08:00 PM

                      This is why I rarely, if ever, buy pre-packaged kimchi.

                      But some people like "aged" kimchi ... like those with dentures.

              2. m
                Mom the Foodie RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 11:27 AM

                'Hate bottled kimchi - 'Love fresh by H-Mart! It never lasts long enough to spoil. 'Also a big fan of their ice cream novelties.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Mom the Foodie
                  ipsedixit RE: Mom the Foodie Mar 7, 2013 11:38 AM

                  They have something that I have not seen at any other Asian grocery store (Ranch99, Murakai, etc.)

                  Onion cuttlefish balls!

                2. jpr54_1 RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 12:41 PM

                  I miss the HMarts in Northern New Jersey.

                  There was always a long table of samples of banchans and other goodies.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jpr54_1
                    fldhkybnva RE: jpr54_1 Mar 7, 2013 12:49 PM

                    I love it! I am on my way now and always come home with more than I planned so we'll see. Did they close all the stores in NJ? My family lives in South Jersey and I've never looked for an H Mart around there but I guess I just assumed they existed.

                    1. re: fldhkybnva
                      jpr54_1 RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 06:05 PM

                      No they didn't close the stores-

                      I moved to Hallandale Beach, Florida

                      th is map of location of stores

                      http://www.hmart.com/company_new/shop...

                  2. fldhkybnva RE: fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 06:02 PM

                    Wow, I guess I was lucky and swiped the last in-house tub of kimchi though I assume if I asked perhaps they have more in the back but I was surprised as usually it's piled quite high. Perhaps, Friday or Saturday is the usual day to make it so that was the end of the supply. I also bought a jar of Tobagi as I've never tried it before.

                    Show Hidden Posts