Kimchi is a delicious (and super hot!) Korean condiment that can be eaten with rice, soup or your favourite Korean dish.
In this article, you’ll learn how to make kimchi in a mason jar. This method is easy and accessible. All you need is a mason jar with a fermentation lid. You can either use an airlock device or low profile silicone lid to release the build-up of gases in the jar, and protect your fermentation from oxygen.
Ingredients (1 litre mason jar)
- 1 medium-sized napa cabbage.
- 1/4 cup sea salt or non-iodised salt.
- 1 bunch shallots.
- 1 teaspoon sugar.
- 1 tbsp grated ginger.
- 2-3 cloves of garlic.
- 2-5 tbsp Korean red chili flakes (Gochugaru).
- Optional: Daikon radish, strips of carrot, miso paste.
Peel the outer leaves off your cabbage. Cut both ends off and the hard core. Keep a few large leaves aside, as you will need them for step 6. Cut your cabbage into quarters and then crossways into 2 inch cubes. Place your cabbage in a large mixing bowl. Fill with water and salt.
Let your mixture stand for 4-6 hours, or overnight. Cover the cabbage with a plate to keep it submerged under the water. Rinse well with water for at least five minutes. Leave the cabbage in a colander for at least 15 minutes to drain.
Mix the garlic, ginger, sugar and optional miso paste into a smooth paste. Miso paste is a vegan-friendly ingredient that will add depth of flavour to your fermentation. Mix gochugaru into your mix. Set aside.
Pour the spicy mixture and cabbage into a mixing bowl. Add shallots and optional daikon radish. Combine well. Massage the spicy mix into the cabbage using your hands. You may prefer to wear gloves in this step, as the chili can irritate your skin.
Add the mixture to your mason jar. Push the cabbage into the jar with your hand and/or fermenting tamper. The brine should be a few centimeters about the cabbage mix. If you do not have enough brine to cover the cabbage, you can let the mixture stand for 20 minutes and try again.
Place a large cabbage leaf on top of the mixture and secure in place with a glass weight. The cabbage leaf and glass weight will ensure that the cabbage stays under the brine. Leave 3-5 cms head space.
Secure your jar with a fermenting lid. Store in a cool, dry place for 2-7 days. Keep out of direct sunlight. Taste test your kimchi every few days until you are happy with the taste.
Store in fridge, with storage cap or canning lid. Your kimchi will continue to ferment when it is stored in the fridge.