Fermented Kimchi

Fermented Kimchi
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Vegan
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Fermenting your own foods is a big trend right now, and the best part is it's really easy to do! The most important thing to remember is to make sure your work surface, knife and bowl are all washed well with hot, soapy water beforehand. Also wash your hands well before beginning to prevent any contamination. You will need a large stainless steel or glass mixing bowl, stainless steel chef's knife, either glass or ceramic jars to store the kimchi in and a wooden pounder to help release all of the juices from the vegetables. This may look like a lot of work, but the instructions are actually really easy and this batch will make enough kimchi to last you for a few months.
  • 1 head Napa cabbage, sliced into ½ inch strips
  • 1 Daikon radish, sliced thinly into half moons
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 bulb of garlic, smashed, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, sliced thinly
  • 1 tbsp crushed chili flakes or more to taste
  • 3 tbsp sea salt
  • 1 cup brine: 1 tsp sea salt stirred into 1 cup water- set aside
  1. Prep the cabbage, Daikon, scallions, garlic, ginger and chiles and toss together in a large, clean bowl.
  2. Sprinkle the 3 tbsp of sea salt over and mix it in using your hands. Massage the mixture for 10 minutes. This will soften the vegetables and allow the water to begin to release.
  3. Next, thoroughly wash your wide mouth glass mason jars that will hold the kimchi.
  4. Pack the kimchi into the jars, pounding to release more of the juices as you go.
  5. Stop filling the jars when you are an inch and a half from the top and place on a baking tray.
  6. When all of your jars are filled and on the tray, you will want to assess if the veggies are completely covered by their juices. If they aren't, use the brine you prepared earlier to top them up. All of the vegetables should be completely submerged to prevent any oxygen from creating unwanted bacterial growth. I also like to top the mixture with a cabbage leaf to keep everything submerged.
  7. Loosely place the lids on your mason jars and place them in a dark corner away from direct light. If you have too much light in your kitchen, then cover everything with a kitchen towel. Keep all of the jars on the tray because as the mixture begins to ferment, it will expand and some of the juice will leak.
  8. After a day, check on your kimchi. Make sure it is still submerged in liquid. If some of the liquid has leaked out, top it up again. Not overfilling your jars will prevent this from happening.
  9. Every day or so, taste your kimchi. Over several days, it will begin to develop its signature sour/spicy/tangy flavor. When you like the taste, tighten the lids and put it in the refrigerator. I like to ferment mine for 7-10 days. Once in the fridge, use it up within 6 months.


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