If you know me you know I am a HUGE fan of spicy food. And that I am also a huge fan of making things from scratch. So of course I decided to adventure in making my own kimchi! Who could say no to yummy homemade kimchi?
Before I get into the recipe, I want to address a really important point, and that is the incredible culture surrounding kimchi. Kimchi has its roots deep in Korean culture. It dates back to ancient times, and even today it is a very important food in Korean traditions. This dish is not something I am just creating myself. I drew inspiration for this recipe from mykoreankitchen.com and I highly recommend you guys check it out!
Now let’s get into what I love about making kimchi! There’s something so satisfying about putting something together, waiting for it to ferment, and then being able to taste all of the work you put in. Fact (maybe?): food tastes better when you appreciate the work it takes.
As you can see, the kimchi really changes in appearance (and obviously taste) as it ferments. The picture above is what my kimchi looked like just after I transferred it to the jar- before I had even pressed it down. The picture below is just three days later!
Enough talk, let’s get into the recipe!
Serves: 6 | Prep time: 30 mins
- 1 head of Napa cabbage, cut into strips
- 1 large daikon radish, cut into strips
- 2 large scallions, chopped
- 1/3 cup salt
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2-inch piece of ginger, minced
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 4 tablespoons gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes)
- Wash cabbage thoroughly and cut into strips. Put into a large bowl and cover with salt, mixing to ensure that it’s fully incorporated. Weigh down with pots or pans and let sit for 1-2 hours (so the salt can draw out water from the cabbage).
- Rinse of all the salt from the cabbage and transfer to a colander. Let drain for ~20 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients and fully incorporate (use gloves with the red pepper flakes!). Transfer to an air-tight container (like a mason jar), and press cabbage down so that it is submerged in the liquid.
- Let ferment for about 3 days (start taste testing at day 2, and decide from that whether you want to go longer). You will need to ‘burp’ your jar every day- just opening it and letting the air out. You should see lots of bubbles rising to the surface when you do this!
- Once you are happy with the taste, store in your fridge and enjoy!