March 25, 2021

Initial Cooking Fail Fixed on a Second Pass: Kimchi


Initial Cooking Fail Fixed on a Second Pass: Kimchi
Spending too much time at home usually leads to just a couple options for me: eat too much, watch too much, or do too much.

I figure why do anything half-assed? I can try to do all three.

My attempt for this is largely to try cooking/kitchen stuff while watching TV (well, more YouTube than anything) and then eating said results. Win/Win/Win....right?

Well except for when my kitchen projects result in failure, or at least partial failures.

After doing all kinds of pickles, a bunch of which I haven't even posted about yet, I decided I wanted to try me some Kimchi. I found a cooking YouTube channel that I of several, that had a Kimchi recipe. I tried following it as close to the letter as I could did NOT work out. I'd love to blame the video, but there was a warning embedded and I can be an idiot....

Too-Salty 1st Batch
Too salty and weak colored

Now I couldn't find an asian pear, so I used some regular pears, which worked fine. Two things I think did not work out, well one definitely didn't work out: I did not get my cabbage rinsed well enough. The end result tasted decent enough, save for the fact it was way too salty.


I had to try again and this time fix that error and one more: I used some Chinese Red Pepper flakes. Nope, you really should use the Korean Red Pepper flakes. Nothing else will work as well, at least according to some other Kimchi videos I watched. I went ahead and stopped by my favorite Korean Market and picked up the good pepper and a way-too-expensive (but so tasty) Asian Pear. As luck would have it I found some cheaper Diakon there and chatted up the owner. He doesn't eat Kimchi, but he makes the stuff they sold there and he told me that he salts his cabbage for 24 hours and rinses it excessively and drains it for a couple of hours.


  • 1 Nappa Cabbage
  • 1 Diakon
  • 2 bunches Green Onion
  • 1 Package Julienne Carrots
Quarter & core the cabbage then cut into 1 inch strips. Heavily salt the cabbage, massaging the salt into the cabbage and allow to sweat out all the water possible. Set aside in an appropriate container for 24 hours. Rinse multiple times and squeeze out as much water as possible. Soak, rinse & repeat until the cabbage is not very salty.

Cut the onions into half-inch to one inch pieces, and the Diakon into desired slices and toss all the vegetables with the wilted cabbage.

  • 2" Peeled Ginger
  • 1 Asian Pear (or a couple regular pears), peeled/cored & chopped
  • 6 cloves peeled garlic
  • 1/4 cup Fish Sauce
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup Korean Red Pepper Flakes
Much better 2nd batch
Better color and flavor

Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend as finely as possible.

Toss all ingredients together (best wear gloves!) and pack tightly into jars. Cap loosely and use an airlock if you have one. Set aside for a few days (I prefer about 6), up to a week. When the Kimchi is fermented enough, it'll get a little "fizzy" as it ages, cap tightly and refrigerate.

I could easily see adding other vegetables or ratio of vegetables to customize your Kimchi mix. 

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