About this Recipe
Kimchi, one of Korea's greatest gifts to the world, gets my vote for the world’s greatest pickle. There are thousands of variations, but this is a solid introduction to the category. The flour paste is optional, but it does improve the flavor and texture, turning the brine into more of a sauce that clings to the vegetables.
Where to begin? Fiber-rich, packed with vitamins and minerals, probiotic — kimchi might be the world’s most potently healthy pickle.
Equipment: Digital scale
2 quarts Yield
- 2½ Tbsp (50 g) brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) water
- 1 (2 lb / 1 kg) Asian cabbage, chopped coarsely, a few large leaves reserved
- 1 medium (200 g) thinly sliced daikon
- 1½ cups (100 g) chopped leek
- 1 cup (100 g) chopped scallions
- 1 cup (100 g) thinly sliced carrot
- 2 Tbsp (20 g) grated ginger
- 1 head of garlic, cloves peeled and smashed
- 1½ cups (50 g) gochugaru (Korean chile powder)
Step 1Put the flour in a saucepan with 1/2 cup water over medium heat. Heat the mixture, stirring to combine, until it forms a thick paste. Set aside to cool.
Step 2Put the cabbage, daikon, leek, scallion, and carrot in a (very) large mixing bowl, weigh them, and measure out 2% of that amount in salt. Toss the vegetables in salt and knead well until there’s plentiful liquid at the bottom of the bowl.
Step 3Put the ginger and garlic in a food processor or mortar and pulse or pound them into a paste. Add the gochugaru and flour paste, mixing well and using some of the veg brine to loosen it, then scrape that into the big bowl. Toss to thoroughly incorporate, then pack into jars or a crock. Top with large cabbage leaves, then weigh down, pushing hard to bring the liquid up over the top of the weight.
Step 4Put somewhere cool for 2 to 6 weeks. Transfer to the fridge when it’s to your liking.
Substitutions: Any sturdy or crunchy vegetables, alone or in combination, can be made into kimchi
Zero Waste: Scraps and trimmings can go in the stock pot
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