Every so often a food craze hits the streets and starts to get everyone buzzing. Step forward kimchi, the Korean staple that's making it big over here. For the uninitiated, it's a fantastic fermented mix of vegetables like cabbage, radishes, garlic and onions along with spices like chilli and ginger. It's left to mature for weeks or even months until it reaches a state of pickled perfection full of subtle flavours. Because it's fermented it's also packed with all those "good bacteria" that give a real boost to the digestive system. That means it doesn't just taste amazing, it does you good too. So check out your local veggie takeaway to see if they've caught the kimchi bug like these four places have.
1. Kimchi Tacos - Tiki Taco
East meets West in the form of these Mexican-style soft tacos. They come deep-loaded with Tiki Taco's own home-made kimchi along with stir-fried pepper, onions, bean sprouts and carrot. Plus there's finely shredded lettuce and a fruity pineapple slaw on top. They take just as much care over the tortillas, too, pressing them flat from dough that they make themselves. So they're less of a lunchtime snack and more of a true vegetarian labour of love.
2. Korean Burger - The Pear Tree
You won't find any partridges in this particular Pear Tree but you will be able to hunt down one of the most amazing chicken burgers it's ever been our privilege to bring you. The kimchi element comes in the form of a slaw and there's also a mix of mayo and gochujang sauce – a deep red and fiery mix of chillies, garlic and Korean herbs and spices. It's got to be one of the spiciest ways to enjoy the hottest food craze of the moment.
3. Kimchi Set - Annyeong Korean Restaurant
They say there are over 180 different recipes for kimchi in Korea and the recipe they use at Annyeong Korean Restaurant gives you the chance to savour three very different varieties. Naturally, one of these is the classic cabbage version and there's also O Ee Kimchi - fermented cucumber spiked with red chilli powder - as well as Kak Too Gi, which is simply pickled white radish. Once you've sampled them all you'll be at least a sixtieth of the way to becoming a real kimchi connoisseur!
4. Kimchi Jjigae - Yijo
Yijo has been an undiscovered gem for many years where head chef Jun Pyo Kon has been quietly turning out mini masterpieces of Korean cuisine. Well once word gets out about the restaurant's Kimchi Jjigae we expect lots more people will be beating a path to their door. We're afraid this is a little less on the vegetarian side but my, my, is it tasty! It's a savoury hotpot of kimchi with the tenderest of pork belly pieces, tuna fish and tofu all served on a bed of white rice. It's also tongue-tingly spicy – so it's a hotpot in every sense of the word.
Korean cuisine is just waiting to be explored and kimchi will be one of your greatest discoveries. So let Deliveroo be your official guide.