Kimchi is a traditional Korean accoutrement. You know … like sauerkraut or really, kinda like salsa. Every family has their own homemade version of kimchi. They eat it with everything. This recipe is another one we just know … cabbage, carrots and green onions; red chili paste; garlic and ginger paste. Which means kimchi is spicy!!!! YUM!!!
Cabbage (maybe a quarter of a cabbage for the pint size jar)
1-2 thin / medium carrots
A handful of green onions. Chopped.
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon red chili paste
1 teaspoon of garlic ginger paste
Filtered water … amount is To Be Determined
Most important note … you can’t do this wrong.
Pick some veggies. Cabbage and radish is fairly traditional. Add carrots and green onions. For the small / pint size mason jar we just used the end of the cabbage we had after making sauerkraut … the thickest parts of the cabbage, sliced 1 medium carrot and about 4 green onions (= scallions = spring onions).
Cut / chop / slice your veggies. Mix everything in a giant mixing bowl. Add the salt and mash those veggies. You won’t get as much water out of the other veggies compared to the cabbage alone. Did you see the videos on my IG story? You knead the vegetables kind of like kneading bread. It doesn’t take long. Maybe 2 min.
For the kimchi, add the red chili paste and the garlic ginger paste. Again … this isn’t a big deal. Add some minced garlic with some grated ginger if you don’t have paste. Add more if you like spicy. Add less if you don’t. You can buy minced garlic. You can buy garlic paste. Don’t make this too hard.
Our homemade garlic ginger paste is equal parts garlic with ginger and some olive oil. We mixed ours in our Vitamix blender because we made such a big batch. You could use any blender or any food processor. Garlic and ginger both have to be peeled. To peel ginger we use a vegetable peeler. It’s tricky cause ginger is a root and always wonky. Make a big batch! It is delicious to stir fry with chicken and / or any vegetable. We use it in Indian dishes and Asian dishes.
Alright … done mixing. Pack it in the mason jar. Pack. I mean, really pack it in. You could use a pestle like I did for the sauerkraut. Add enough filtered water to cover all the veggies. You don’t have to fill the jar. In fact, keep about an inch free at the top for fermenting space. How much water you add depends on how much water you got out of your vegetables at the beginning. Keep the lid LOOSE. Like just a few a twists, maybe 2. The lid won’t come off when you lift, but it is not tightly screwed down. Fermentation can get messy …. see sauerkraut post for a few more details about fermentation if you’re interested.
So, there you have it. In about 30 min, you can bust out sauerkraut and kimchi. I’m telling you the hardest part of this is waiting the 2 weeks ….. Let it rest in a cool, dry place, like a pantry. Keep on a plate (in case of mess). In 2 weeks taste it! If it’s not quite what you like, taste it every few days until it’s perfect. Then refrigerate it to stop the fermenting process.
Kimchi is often just a side dish. We love it with eggs. Or top of tacos. Or with sausage. And it’s another superfood full of probiotics.