For Salting Cabbage
- 5 lb napa cabbage (approximately 1 large or 2 medium size)
- 3/4 cup Korean kimchi sea salt or flake sea salt (If you’re using a fine sea salt, reduce it to 1/2 cup)
For Vegan Kimchi Paste
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 4 dried shiitake mushrooms
- 1 sheet of 5”x5” dried seaweed (Konbu/Dahsima)
- 2 tbsp sweet rice flour
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 oz ginger root
- 1 to 2 fresh red chili (optional)
- 6 to 8 oz well ripped persimmon (approximately 2 medium size), peeled
- 1 tbsp Korean kimchi sea salt or flake sea salt (If you’re using a fine sea salt, reduce it to 2 tsp)
- 3/4 cup gochugaru, Korean red pepper flakes (reduce amount to 1/3 to 1/2 cup if you like mild spicy)
- 8 to 10 oz Korean radish or daikon, peeled and thinly julienne
- 4 green onions, halves in lengthwise then cut into 1-inch long pieces
- 4 oz Korean mustard, thinly julienne carrot or garlic chive
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds, optional
- Cut napa cabbage into quarters lengthwise, and remove the stem. Then cut into bite-size pieces.
- Place the cut cabbage in a large strainer and splash water to wet the cabbage. On the bottom of a large mixing bowl, add 1/4 of the wet cabbage and sprinkle a handful of salt. Repeat until all the cabbage and salt are all in the bowl, about 4 to 5 layers. Salt down the cabbage for 3 hours. Rotate and mix from the bottom to the top. Do this once or twice to evenly salt all the cabbage.
- After 3 hours, the water from the cabbage may be actually covering the cabbage. Check to see if the cabbage has salted enough by bending the thick stem part. If it snaps, it’s not ready and needs to soak more. If it bends nicely then without snapping, it’s ready to rinse. Rinse thoroughly under running cold water at least 3 to 5 times and place in a large strainer to drain completely, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, let’s make kimchi paste. In a small saucepan, add water, dried shiitake, and seaweed. Bring it to a boil. When it starts boiling, remove the seaweed, then reduce the heat to medium and keep simmering for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and remove shiitake mushrooms. Add sweet rice flour and whisk. Turn the heat back to medium and bring it to a soft boil and keep whisking for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool completely in the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes.
- In a blender, add the garlic, ginger, fresh chili, persimmon, salt and rice flour porridge. Blend until it is combined well and smooth.
- In a large mixing bowl, pour kimchi paste, gochugaru, and add vegetables. If you have a plastic glove, mix it with your hand. If not, use a spoon.
- Add the drained cabbage and mix well with your hand. (again, I recommend you to wear a plastic glove, if you don’t have one, just use a spoon)
Add sesame seeds and give a final light toss. Transfer to an airtight container and make sure to leave 1″ at the top, so kimchi has room to ferment. Close tightly and place on your kitchen counter for 24 to 48 hours. Then place it in the refrigerator. Enjoy your homemade vegan kimchi!
- Prep Time: 4 hours