Korean kimchi

    14 days 20 min

    Said to be amongst the top 5 healthiest ingredients/condiments in the world, kimchi is a traditional Korean fermented vegetable pickle. It is traditionally served with grilled meats or stir fried with rice but is becoming a very popular garnish right here in London on everything from a cheeseburger to a burrito. On salads and sandwiches it gives an amazing hit of warm sour chilli, garlic and ginger. Try a grilled ‘kimcheese’ sandwich: good sour dough, strong cheese and kimchi – heavenly! With the added value of being raw and probiotic - full of good bacteria - it ticks all the right boxes!


    18 people made this

    Serves: 10 

    • 2 (800g to 1kg) Chinese cabbages
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh root ginger
    • 4 cloves garlic
    • 75g Korean red pepper, coarsely ground
    • 2 small handfuls natural fine sea salt
    • 1kg carrots, thinly sliced
    • 1 bunch spring onions, chopped

    Prep:20min  ›  Extra time:14days pickling  ›  Ready in:14days20min 

    1. Core the cabbages and cut into 4 lengthways then chop. Blend the root ginger with a little water to form a paste; set aside.
    2. Blend the garlic, ginger paste and red pepper to make a paste.
    3. Salt the cabbage, carrots and spring onions in a large bowl and toss; try a bit, it should taste just a little too salty. Now add the red pepper paste, mix and massage well into the vegetables. Your cabbage mix should be limp and brine should start appearing. It’s this brine that contains the sugars which naturally occurring yeasts will begin to work on, creating an environment in which lacto bacillus will grow and help create the wonderful rich taste of fermented kimchi.
    4. Once the mix is limp and sponge like, pack it into 1 of 2 (2L) containers. Push it down hard and compress – it needs to be submerged in brine in order to ferment efficiently.
    5. Now take your second container, fill it with water, enough to keep the kimchi submerged and put a lid on it, and place on top of the kimchi. Carefully cover both containers in a muslin cloth or similar and place in a larger outer bowl to catch any excess brine. Leave at room temperature for 2 to 3 weeks, tasting every week to check progress and to check brine is covering the vegetables. You can eat it after just a few days as kimchi ferments quickly in warm temperatures. However, remember: long and slow is best! So store it in the coolest part of your house in summer and somewhere slightly warmer in the winter.
    6. After around 2 weeks you should have a tasty kimchi – leave as long as you need to reach the desired flavour – you decide. You may get yeast growth and bubbles after a week or so on the top – this is a harmless part of the process and can be removed easily. What’s beneath is fine! When it’s to your taste, it can be jarred and kept in the fridge for up to 3 months.


    Instead of the carrots you can use mooli or any radishes or other root vegetables which you could eat raw.

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