Umami is a funny word to say aloud, and it is very fun to eat. Over the last couple years, this popular fifth basic taste sensation has been all the rage in the world of food, and why not? Fermented foods have a lot of this umami, as do tomatoes, soy sauce, kimchi, some cheeses, and even green tea.
So, last week, I was browsing in my favorite Asian grocery store (I needed coconut milk and dried shiitake mushrooms, plus I just love their produce) and I ran into an entire huge display of kimchi: jars upon jars upon jars of bright, beautiful, fermented spicy cabbage. My better half and I love kimchi, but it takes us longer than some to go through a really big jar; I’m always wracking my brain to come up with new ways to incorporate it into meals. Often, if we have some leftover rice from the night before, we throw some kimchi over it as a snack if we’re peckish, but a jar still goes a long way, and that’s a lot of snacks.
The other item I always seem to have in my fridge, but don’t use nearly enough of, is miso paste. So once I got home from the market (with a brand new tub of kimchi and a pouch of miso) I set to work to find a way to put these ingredients to good use. There was a little chunk of bacon in my cheese drawer, some of those juicy Campari tomatoes that are so good, even in the winter, and an idea hit me: let’s make a BLT! Sort of.
I mixed up a little miso and garlic into the mayonnaise I also bought (Japan makes great mayo, too) and grabbed a Foldit flatbread. As soon as the bacon started cooking, my other half came in to the kitchen and started sniffing. He sort of wrinkled his nose at everything he saw out on the counter, but he threw an extra flatbread into my line of sight, because he was hungry. He trusted me. Some bacon, some kimchi, a couple tomato slices, the mayo, and POW! talk about pleasant taste sensation! The flatbread sandwich had all the crunch and texture as a traditional BLT but was extraordinarily different and delicious, juicy and totally satisfying.
If you’re feeling a wee bit umami deprived in your life, or if you happen to have a jar of kimchi languishing in your icebox, this flatbread sandwich may be just the thing with which to treat your tastebuds.
Amy at Flatout
Bacon Kimchi BKT Foldit
1 Flatout Foldit
2 slices thick cut bacon, cooked
1/2 cup napa cabbage, shredded
2 tablespoons kimchi, as spicy as you like, patted dry
2 slices ripe tomato
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/2 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon Japanese miso paste or 1/4 teaspoon honey
In a small bowl, mix miso paste or honey and garlic into mayonnaise until well blended. Once your bacon is cooked, your Foldit flatbread is ready to build. Begin with bacon, then kimchi, then cabbage, tomato, and top with miso aioli. Fold in half.