The fermented foodstuff
While traditional kimchi is made of Chinese cabbage, there are numerous other versions using vegetables such as Korean radish or cucumber.
Fermenting – kimchi from your own kitchen
There are numerous variations of kimchi. The taste differs depending on how it is prepared and can be adapted to suit your palate.
- 1 Chinese cabbage (approx. 1.2kg)
- 20g sea salt or natural rock salt without fluoride and iodide
- 160ml water
- 2 tbsp. rice flour
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 1 large piece of white radish (approx. 150g), sliced into matchsticks
- 1 carrot, sliced into matchsticks
- 3 spring onions, cut into rings
- 6 garlic cloves, roughly cut
- 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, roughly cut
- 30ml fish sauce
- 40g chilli powder
- 40g paprika
- Cut the cabbage lengthways into quarters, remove the core and cut into bite-sized pieces.
- Put the pieces in a bowl, cover with cold water and soak briefly. Drain and rub generously with salt. Mix the cabbage with your hands every 30 minutes. Let it stand for a total of 2 hours. After 2 hours, rinse the cabbage well with cold water, spin dry and put aside.
- For the kimchi paste, mix the water well with the rice flour, bring to the boil and allow to thicken for a few minutes while stirring continuously. Add the sugar and continue cooking until it thickens slightly. Then leave to cool.
- Using a food processor, blend the garlic, ginger and spring onions into a paste. Add the paste to the flour/sugar/water mixture and stir well.
- It is best to mix all the ingredients by hand (tip: wear plastic gloves). Then place in a clean jar that has been rinsed in boiling water and seal, making sure it's airtight. Important: don't fill the jar until the very top as the cabbage will continue to lose a lot of liquid during the fermenting process, which also needs space in the jar.
- Leave the kimchi to ferment at room temperature for 2-5 days. Check the kimchi every day by opening the jar, letting out the gases and pressing the vegetables down into the jar. Taste the kimchi after the second day. If it tastes delicious, the jar can be transferred to the fridge where it will keep for up to three months.