Having traveled to Japan and Korea a lot of times, my family loves to eat Kimchi, a famous side dish of pickled cabbage. It was my mom’s Korean friend, Mr. Kim, who taught us how to make it.
1) Separate and wash cabbage leaves. Sprinkle liberally with salt. Scoop and stir with hands. Place salted cabbage leaves in a large bowl, put a heavy plate on top of the leaves, cover with plastic wrap, and place in refrigerator overnight. Be sure that water covers all cabbage leaves – place a plate or other heavy object on top of leaves to ensure that they stay covered with water.
2) The next day, pour off water excess water and thoroughly rinse cabbage leaves. You can shake them gently in the sink to remove excess moisture.
3) Put a handful of chilli pepper into a bowl. Add from a third as much to an equal amount of sesame seeds, and crushed garlic. Add enough sesame oil to moisten everything, and approximately an equal amount of rice vinegar (enough to make a paste).
4) Spread each cabbage leaf with the paste and arrange them in a bowl. Use your hands to rub seasoning evenly into all cabbage leaves. Be sure to use gloves to do this, otherwise, your hands will burn from the chili flakes.
5) Transfer seasoned cabbage leaves into a large glass bottle. Be sure to use firm pressure with your hands to push down on cabbage leaves as they stack up inside the bottle. Transfer any liquid that accumulated during the mixing process into the bottle as well – it will become kimchi brine. Some liquid will also come out of the cabbage leaves as you press down on them as they are stacked in the bottle.
6) Leave about 2 inches of room at the top of the bottle before capping it tightly with a lid. Allow bottle of kimchi to sit at room temperature for 2-3 days.
7) Your kimchi is now ready to eat. Enjoy! 🙂
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