40 gmfine sea salt1.2 kg Chinese cabbage, cut into 5cm squares370 gmspring onions (about 1 large bunch), cut into 5cm lengths45 gm ginger (9cm piece), finely grated10 garlic cloves, crushed30 gm mild Korean chilli powder, or to taste (see note)1½ tsp caster sugar
Stir 30gm salt and 2 litres water in a large bowl to dissolve salt. Place cabbage in a 2.5-litre non-reactive container, pour brine over to cover, weight with a plate and set aside until starting to ferment (12 hours; the liquid should bubble a little and the cabbage will become slightly sour).
Drain cabbage (reserve brine) and combine with spring onion, ginger, garlic, chilli powder, sugar and remaining salt in a large bowl. Transfer to a 2-litre sterilised jar and pour reserved brine over to cover. Pour some of the remaining brine into a Ziploc bag, seal tightly and place on top of cabbage to keep it submerged in the brine. Set aside in a cool place (no more than 20C) to ferment until it tastes to your liking (4-6 days).
Remove Ziploc bag, seal jar and refrigerate. Kimchi will keep refrigerated for 3 months.
Note Korean chilli powder (kochukaru) is available from Korean and other Asian grocers.
This recipe is from the May 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller
Kimchi is a great accompaniment to soups, braises and stir-fries, but you can also eat it as a snack with rice or on its own. Use a brightly coloured Korean chilli powder to give the pickles a vibrant red hue, and add it to taste. You’ll need to begin this recipe a week ahead.