How to Make Kimchi at Home

I never buy pre-made kimchi from the market because my mom’s cabbage kimchi is the best! While I might be biased, I do know one thing for sure – making kimchi at home tastes so much better than store bought kimchi!

There are so many different ways to make kimchi but my mom likes to keep it simple with just a few key ingredients. Her recipe is easy, simple, approachable yet incredibly delicious. We typically make this in a big batch and it’ll last about 1-2 months, depending on how fast we go through it.

Now that I’m older, I look forward to making kimchi with my mom because it’s a way for us to bond and spend time with each other. She’s super proud of this recipe and I’m so thankful to be able to share our family recipe with you!

How to Make Easy Kimchi

There are so many different ways to make kimchi but my mom likes to keep it simple with just a few key ingredients. Her recipe is easy, simple, approachable yet incredibly delicious
Servings 1 jar
Prep Time 14 hrs
Total Time 14 hrs

Ingredients

  • 4 napa cabbages

Brine

  • 8-10 cups water
  • 1/4 cup salt

Sauce

  • 30-40 garlic cloves
  • 5-6 inch nub of ginger sliced
  • 1 1/2 onions chopped
  • 1 lb korean radish chopped
  • 8-10 scallions chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup gochugaru Korean red pepper flakes
  • 3-4 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1 1/2 cup fish sauce
  • 2 cups anchovy stock or water

Instructions

  • Prepare the brine by filling up a big bucket with water and 1/4 cup of salt. The brine should be salty to taste so adjust the salt accordingly.
  • Cut the napa cabbages in half then into quarters and slightly wet them so the salt adheres better.
  • Generously salt in between the layers of the cabbage heads and place them in the brine.
  • Let the cabbage brine for 8-16 hours before rinsing with water and draining. Make sure to squeeze all the excess water out.
  • For the sauce, combine sliced ginger, garlic, chopped onion, and chopped radish into a blender. Fill with water about half way and blend until smooth.
  • Transfer to a large bucket with chopped scallions. Add the sugar, fish sauce, gochugaru, salt, and anchovy stock. Adjust the seasoning to your taste.
  • Take a small handful of the sauce and rub it into each layer of cabbage. Make sure most of it is added to the cabbage head instead of the leaves.Transfer to a glass jar and repeat.
  • Transfer to a glass jar and repeat.
  • Let this ferment for 1-3 days and enjoy!

Notes

1. If you leave it out in room temperature, it’ll ferment faster. To slow down the fermentation process, place the kimchi in your fridge after 1 day.
2. For 2 cups of anchovy stock, combine 8 dried anchovies (innards removed), 1 5×5 sheet of kelp, half an onion and 6 cups of water. Boil for 20-30 minutes and strain. The anchovy stock can be substituted with water.
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Korean

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