Homemade kimchi

One of the ways we are attacking our debt and getting the most out of our dollars every month is by making most of our food at home. Not just meals, but also pantry goods that we might have easily thrown into the cart at the grocery store without thinking twice.

A favorite add-in to many meals around our household is kimchi. It can run between $9-$12 for a large jar so this week we bypassed the jarred stuff and made it ourselves Simeon made it. High five chef husband! But truly anyone can make it in about 5 minutes with your ingredients at the ready.

Did you know kimchi is not only ridiculously easy to make but it’s also super healthy? It’s true! Because it’s fermented, kimchi is high in the good-for-you lactic acid bacteria, specifically, Lactobacillus kimchii. One serving also provides over half of the daily recommended dose of vitamin C!

Kimchi is a staple of Korean meals and a common side dish. By some reports South Koreans eat nearly 40 lbs of kimchi every year! I doubt we will ever eat that much but having a homemade kimchi in the fridge at all times sure makes it easy to consume on the regular.

Here’s how we made it and how you can make your own at home.

1. Organize your ingredients. We used: Napa cabbage, purple daikon radish, carrots, spring onions, garlic, ginger, chili pepper, fish sauce, water and salt to taste. Plus a little of the juice from an almost empty jar of kimchi! The best part of making your own pantry staples is the opportunity to adjust the flavor profile to suit your taste. You can make it more or less salty, spicy, sweet, crunchy…whatever you fancy!

2. Dump all your ingredients in a big bowl and mix thoroughly with a little water.

3. Once everything is incorporated transfer to a bell jar and squish it all down so it’s as fully compacted as possible.

4. Now your kimchi is ready to sit! The real magic of this dish is the fermentation. Cover the top of your jar with a piece of folded cheesecloth and secure it with a lid. Then place your jar in a dark, cool, and dry spot for a week or so and wait. Yum.