Kimchi is so cheap to make, but I always felt like it was too high effort to bother with, and I've always just bought from the store. I decided it was time for me to buckle down and give it a try.

Followed Maangchi's recipe loosely.


Ingredients

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  • 2 heads napa cabbage
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/6 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1/12 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup fish sauce
  • 1 cup hot pepper flakes (gochugaru)
  • 1/3 cup crushed garlic
  • .5 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 green onion
  • 1 cup daikon radish
  • 1/4 cup carrot

Methodology

Chop the napa cabbage in half.

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Remove the core.

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Chop each half into half again to form quarters and cut up into bite-sized pieces that are about an inch long.

Question why this photo won't rotate.

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Now it's time to clean and salt the cabbage.

I didn't have containers that were big enough to hold all the cabbage, so I ended up splitting it into two batches during this step.

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After adding the cabbage to the bowls, fill with cold water and add salt. Stir it all around.

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I added plates on top to keep all the cabbage submerged under the water. At this point, we will let the cabbage sit for about 3 hours, flipping it once every 30 minutes aka almost once after episode of your anime binge watching.

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But before hopping into the binge watch, let's prep the sauce that we'll mix with the cabbage to create kimchi.

Chop up the green onion--toss it into a container to keep in the fridge.

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Julienne the daikon radish into pretty matchsticks. Same--toss it into the same container to keep in the fridge.

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Dice the onion. Toss into fridge.

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Dice the garlic and grate the ginger. Toss into fridge.

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Dice the carrot. Toss into fridge.

Phew, veg prep is done.

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For the paste itself, boil together the water and sweet rice flour on the stove.

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Add in the sugar when things start getting nice and thick.

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Remove the paste from the heat and allow to cool.

This is pretty tasty--it's basically liquidy mochi.

Now that the sauce prep is done, you can resume the anime binge and remember to flip the cabbage once every 30 minutes for 3 hours.

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When the 3 hours are done, drain the water and rinse out the leaves 3 times by adding new water, swishing everything around, and draining.

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Get the work station ready to start combining everything.

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Add the veggies into the sweet rice flour paste.

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Also add the red pepper flakes and fish sauce. As a bonus, I added some apple sauce for sweetness.

Mix everything together.

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Slowly move the sauce over into the cabbage and mix around.

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Pack it down tight into a container and leave the lid loose.

Though the kimchi is pretty tasty when it's fresh at this stage, I wanted to ferment--I ended up leaving it outside for just one day. There were a lot of bubbles forming by then.

When done, keep in the fridge.

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Results

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I enjoyed this a lot and will definitely make again since I caved in and bought the red pepper flakes, hah.

For next time, I'll increase the amount of paste and salt, but this was very tasty. I might actually skip the ferment step too because I like the sweetness that is present in the fresh kimchi.