Friday, August 3, 2012


Last week after a long day I had a sudden ambition to make some kimchi (possibly to reconnect with my Korean roots but mostly to show hubby that I can make kimchi!).

I bought some daikon (Japanese/Korean carrots) and cabbage. First I diced up the daikon and cut up the cabbage into 2-3 inch pieces.

Chop chop

The recipe calls for some sea salt that you can find almost anywhere. Dump a handful (about that much in the picture) in the cabbage and the carrots. I also sprinkled some sugar in it as well to balance out the taste.

While the cabbage and carrots are marinating, cut up three stalks of scallion in 2 inch pieces.

And some slices of ginger.

And mince a couple cloves of garlic (this will give the kimchi some omph).

Mix the above two ingredients into the scallions and cover up until the cabbage/carrots finish marinating.

I happened to have bought some chili-flavoured oil with crispy shrimp from the Chinese supermarket that weekend, which will go nicely with the kimchi. You can always substitute this with real garlic and red pepper flakes.

I used for the spices one teaspoon of oil (go easy on this), some oyster sauce and some sugar. You can really adjust the spice level according to your preference.

Mix the spices into the scallion/ginger/garlic.


After two hours (longer is better), wash out the cabbage and squeeze out all the excess salt water.

Combine the spiced ingredients (i.e. scallions, garlic, ginger) with the marinated ones, and mix thoroughly.

The secret ingredient?

That's right - Pepsi!

This is what makes the kimchi crunchy and sweet. And some of this can't hurt either (a lot of kimchi recipes actually calls for apples or pears).

Then mix that all up...

You are supposed to leave it in a cool, dry space for 1-2 days, until it ferments. You will know when it ferments because it will smell pretty funky and the mixture will turn a little sticky. I only left mine out for half a day, and then put it in the fridge, because it was pretty hot and I was afraid it would go bad.

After a day in the fridge...

It's kimchi time! This was unbelievable crunchy with the right amount of spice. It's really garlicky because of all of garlic cloves I put in, but the taste is quite authentic. I found myself picking off one cabbage after another, and eating the carrots as if it were Cheetos! It's really quite addictive, and the carrots help you digest after a heavy (or light) meal. The spices in the kimchi is also purportedly good for your system, especially in the summer.

Two (three if I could) thumbs up for this kimchi recipe! (I also made enough to give out to others, in case anyone wants it =)

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