How to Make Your Own Kimchi at Home
It was our very great pleasure last weekend to host our first Kimchi Rooftop Party with wonderful members of Green Sustainable Living Hong Kong. The term “kimchi” is derived from a Korean word ‘shimchae’ which means ‘salting of vegetables’. Mimicking the kimchi parties held by Korean farmers at the end of cabbage season, in order to preserve this vital vegetable, we decided to have a go ourselves on a pretty Mui Wo rooftop.
We were under the strict, but creative, supervision of kimchi-queen Sam – who has been making kimchi for years due to its health-giving properties. As a natural probiotic, research shows that kimchi has a long list of health actions including anticancer, anti-obesity, anti-diabetic, and anti-constipation. It promotes brain, skin, and colorectal health. It reduces cholesterol and blood clots, and has anti-oxidant and anti-aging properties. There’s a reason Koreans are so youthful and healthy!
Here is our guide to preparing kimchi for yourself, below in pictures! Please try this at home 🙂
1. Chop & salt as much cabbage as you want. Leave this overnight or at least a couple of hours. We added too much salt to speed things up, and washed it out later. Wash and chop carrots, radish & spring onion in the quantities that you like…
2. Blend up the kimchi paste by mixing onions, ginger & garlic. This is Sam’s own recipe but it’s up to you what spices to add in the kimchi paste. To the paste add as much korean chilli pepper as you can handle. Korean chilli pepper is recommended to maintain the Korean flavour (and gives the red colour), but you can experiment with other chilli peppers if you want. If you are not vegetarian you can also add fish sauce to taste. However, fish sauce can be entirely omitted or simply replaced with seaweed.
3. Mix it all up, get your hands dirty, taste and alter as you go along! When it tastes good to you, you can fill up your clean, re-cycled glass jars 🙂 Don’t fill the jars too much, leave some space at the top as the kimchi expands over time. “Burp” your jars daily to prevent gas build-up. Leave for at least a week. The longer you leave it, the better it tastes! Refrigerate when you like the taste and want the kimchi to stop fermenting.
We finished off our Kimchi rooftop party with recipes for home-made ginger beer and lemoncello. Home fermenting is so much fun and such a great way to meet people and share time together. Please join us at our next rooftop party coming soon! 😀