Fermented foods have been central to good health for thousands of years, and in Southeast Asia, the staple is Kimchi, a kind of Korean sauerkraut. Here is my easy recipe for this delicious side dish to keep your microbiome healthy and happy…
- 4 lb Napa cabbage
- 2 medium carrots, julienned
- 8 oz radish, very thinly sliced
- 1/3-1/2 cup Himalayan salt
- 1 bunch green onion, thinly sliced
- 10 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp ginger, minced
- 2 tbsp Korean chili powder (for medium heat)
- 2 tbsp Fish sauce
- 2 tbsp kelp powder
- 2 tbsp white wine
- 2 tbsp light miso
1. Cut the cabbage in half lengthways and remove the core. Cut the cabbage into quarters, then into 2-inch chunks. Put this in a large bowl with the carrots and radish. Sprinkle with the salt and massage in so everything is coated in salt and starting to soften and wilt. Cover with cold, chlorine-free water and let stand at room temperature for a couple of hours.
2. When ready; pour the soaked cabbage mixture into a strainer and drain all the brine off. Rinse with some cold running water and drain completely.
3. When drained; put the cabbage mixture back in the large bowl and add the green onions, garlic, and ginger.
4. In small bowl or measuring cup; mix together the chili powder, fish sauce, kelp powder, white wine, and miso paste. Pour over the cabbage mixture, put on disposable gloves, and massage in well. (The chili powder will burn!)
5. Pack tightly in Mason jars. Push down firmly to make sure the juice covers the veggies. Put the lid on but just set the ring in place to hold the lid down without screwing it in place. If you tighten them the jars will blow up! Place the jars on a rimmed baking dish to catch any spill-over. Let sit at room temperature for 3-5 days, until it is bubbly and fragrant. Once each day, insert a clean chopstick or butter knife to release air bubbles. If needed, pour in some additional brine to keep all the vegetables submerged.
6. When it is fermented to the point that you like, close the lids tight and refrigerate for up to six months. It is ready to eat after two weeks but will get stronger as it ages. Make sure the vegetables stay submerged the whole time, especially after you take some from the jar.