Fermented foods are on a recent revival in the states, evidenced by the number of food blogs popping up touting the many benefits of adding fermented foods to the everyday diet. No matter if your new to this trend or you’ve been eating fermented foods since you were knee high to a grasshopper, it’s time to spice up that cabbage with an easy, yet delicious, homemade Kimchi recipe.
Bust out some of the leftover carrots and radishes, grab that gorgeous head of cabbage you just picked up; add in a few extra ingredients, and then wait patiently until the Kimchi is done. The waiting is the most important part. Enjoy!
1 red pepper
5 green onions
1 – 2 onions, depending on size – a medium yellow or equivalent fresh onions would work well
1+ tbsp sriracha, to taste
2 tbsp ginger
1+ hot pepper of choice, to taste
1 head garlic, if using fresh remove woody stem prior to chopping
2ish cups of water
2 tbsp sea salt
A couple of good sized glass jars, ball work nicely
Trim end off cabbage, cut into four wedges removing (and saving) the core, then slice thin strips. Shred carrots, rough chop peppers and onions, thin slice radishes in circles. Toss all vegetables together in a large bowl. Dissolve salt in water to make a brine. Pour brine over veggies and massage thoroughly for a few minutes. Now divide veggies between 2 or 3 glass jars.
Make sure veggies remain submerged in brine, make more if you have to. Place a piece of the reserved cabbage core in the top of the jar to push down the veg mix, secure with lid. Veggies should be packed in pretty well, feel free to push them down and get as much of the veggie mixture in each jar as possible. Rest on the counter for 4 hours – 1 day, depending on your schedule and availability to take on the next step.
Drain brine into a bowl. Dump veggies into a separate bowl. Mortar/Pestal, spice grind (whatever you like to use) the seasonings into a paste. Toss with veg mixture until coated. Repack veggies into jars and cover with brine. Again, make more brine if needed. Use the cabbage core again to press the veggies in tightly. Keep everything submerged in the brine to ensure mold doesn’t grow during the fermentation process. Leave on counter or in a dark place to ferment.
Fermentation is a process. If you like fresh Kimchi go ahead and eat it in as few as 2 days. If you’re not sure, taste it after two days and decide to consume more or leave it to continue fermenting. NEVER double dip! Feel free to let the Kimchi continue fermenting up to a week on the counter, then move it to the fridge.
Highly encourage you to check out YumUniverse as the author makes the process easy to follow and has tons of pictures.
No instant gratification here, but a worthwhile (and delicious!) process in my opinion.