learn, make, eat, repeat
Kimchi Recipe

If you’re here, it’s very likely that you’ve seen Mama Kim’s kimchi refills on my socials. With the overwhelming amount of comments like “I’ll give an arm & a leg to just have one bite” or “store-bought doesn’t cut it, I need your MOM’S,” I made it a mission to have my mom use measurements- yes measurements (I know this is a phenomenon for asian moms) in order to bring y’all a recipe! Hope you’re ready to embark on a spicy, tangy, and totally addictive journey as we dive into the world of hoem-made Kimchi! 🌶

Kimchi is literally my soul food.

When Mama Kim was pregnant with me, she helplessly and uncontrollably craved kimchi. I know some pregnant women can’t even stand the smell of kimchi but I guess fetus-me spoke up! It was absolutely no surprise when my love for kimchi started at a very young age. Kimchi was no side bish.. I mean dish. SHE WAS MY MAIN.

3 main components of kimchi: 
Prepping the cabbage. Making the kimchi Sauce. Putting the two together. Oh, if there were to be a 4th component it would be ~ FERMENTATION ~

Shall we get started?

Ingredients: (keep in mind, kimchi is all about adjusting to taste! Add or take away to your liking)

  • 7 napa cabbages (Feel free to use less and adjust portions)
  • 3 korean radishes (Add if you like it, its okay to leave it out)
  • Coarse Salt
  • 7 med-sized potatoes (1 per cabbage)
  • 7 yellow onions (1 per cabbage)
  • 2 ⅓ cup of garlic cloves (1/3 cup per cabbage)
  • 21 green onion stems (3 per cabbage)
  • Fresh ginger (¼ in. thick x 2 in.long piece per cabbage) see YT video for ref.
  • 4 cups of gochugaru | Korean Chili Powder (0.57 cup per cabbage)
  • ½ cup salted shrimp (1.14 tbsp per cabbage)
  • ¾ cup fish sauce (1.71 tbsp per cabbage)
  • ½ cup tuna sauce (1.14 tbsp per cabbage)

Prepping the Napa Cabbage:

  • 1. Slice your cabbage leaves into your desired size. For the outer leaves that are larger, we like to slice down the middle first, and then into smaller pieces. As the leaves get smaller towards the inside of the cabbage, you can just cut them into 1/3s or 1/4s!
  • 2. Do a quick rinse of the cabbage leaves. You’ll be washing them more thoroughly later.
  • 3. Using coarse salt, generously & thoroughly salt your rinsed cabbage leaves.
  • 4. After 1 hour, cycle the cabbage leaves from the bottom to the top and the top leaves to the bottom. This is to ensure that your cabbage leaves are salted evenly! (You’ll begin to see a lot of excess water drained from the cabbage)
  • 5. After another hour, rinse cabbage leaves twice then drain any excess water for 30-60 minutes

Making the Mashed Potatoes:

  • 6. Peel potato and cut in smaller pieces (it just make it easier to cook)
  • 7. We use a Instant Pot on setting “Steam” for 3 minutes to cook them. You can just use a regular pot/steamer to fully cook the potatoes. (Just enough for the potatoes to be mashed.
  • 8. After the potatoes are done cooking, mash it up & feel free to add a little bit of water to create a paste-like texture.

Kimchi Sauce:

  • 9. Slice up your onion into more blendable pieces.
  • 10. Combine the onion, garlic, ginger, and blend. (If the ingredients aren’t blending easily, feel free to add a little bit of fish sauce & tuna sauce to make it smooth. But make sure to calculate it into the total amount of sauce you’ll be using for your full batch.)
  • 11. Slice the green onion vertically and then chop them up into 1/8ths.
  • 12. Peel the radish and cut it into your desired size.
  • 13. Into a large mixing bowl (the one you’ll be making your kimchi in) add in the mashed potatoes, your blended mix, fish sauce, tuna sauce, chili pepper flakes, and salted shrimp.
  • 14. Thoroughly mix everything until it turns into a cohesive red paste
  • 15. Batch by batch, add in your prepped cabbage and begin to mix the sauce in
  • 16. Once you’re done adding all your cabbage and it’s mixed thoroughly, add any ingredients until you’re satisfied with how it tastes! (Although our measurements should suffice haha)
  • 17. Then mix in the green onion and radish and mix thoroughly
  • 18. Transfer the kimchi into a container and press down so that it’s compact
  • 19. Seal the container
  • 20. Leave it out (room temperature) for 24hrs and then transfer into a fridge.
  • 21. Enjoy the kimchi the next day if you prefer your kimchi fresh and unripe. Give it 1-2 weeks if you prefer the fermented flavors!
  • 22. ENJOY~

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