How to Make Traditional Korean Kimchi
Kimchi is a traditional Korean dish made by fermenting vegetables with a spicy, tangy paste made of chili flakes, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, and other seasonings. Here’s how to make kimchi at home:
1 large head of Napa cabbage (about 2 lbs), cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup Korean chili flakes (gochugaru)
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup rice flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 cup chopped scallions
1 cup shredded carrots
In a large bowl, mix together the Korean chili flakes, fish sauce, rice flour, sugar, garlic, and ginger to create a paste.
Add the chopped scallions and shredded carrots to the paste, and mix well.
Add the Napa cabbage to the paste mixture and use your hands to mix everything together, making sure the cabbage is evenly coated with the paste.
Pack the cabbage mixture tightly into a large glass jar or other airtight container, pressing down firmly to remove any air bubbles.
Cover the jar with a lid and let it sit at room temperature for 1-2 days, until it starts to ferment. You may need to “burp” the jar by opening it to release any built-up gas.
Once the kimchi has fermented to your liking, transfer it to the refrigerator to slow down the fermentation process.
Kimchi can be eaten immediately, or it can be aged in the refrigerator for several days to develop a stronger flavor.
You can add other vegetables or seasonings to your kimchi to customize the flavor. Popular additions include radish, cucumber, pear, and oysters.
If you prefer a milder kimchi, reduce the amount of Korean chili flakes or use a mild chili powder instead.
Be sure to use a clean jar or container and wash your hands thoroughly before handling the ingredients to prevent contamination.
Kimchi is a delicious and nutritious dish that has been a staple of Korean cuisine for centuries. Try making it at home and experiment with different variations to find your favorite combination of ingredients!