My First Batch of Kimchi

August 2, 2021

My childhood was one that was filled with delicious and lovingly made Korean food made by my grandma (할머니). It's taken me three decades to realize how incredibly blessed and spoiled my sisters and I were by my grandma's cooking. She came to this country in her 50s, equipped with a huge arsenal of recipes, all memorized. Our bellies were always happy and full and my grandma instilled in all of us a love of food and cooking. 
I could list so many of my favorite dishes my grandma would make but what I've found so impressive was her repertoire of kimchi varieties: napa cabbage, cucumber, cubed radish, white, water, etc. All of these you can find at a decent Korean restaurant that serves a wide array of banchan but one kimchi I've missed after all these years is my grandma's green cabbage kimchi. Its crunch and freshness were always so refreshing. 

Since I had a small head of farmers market green cabbage recently, I decided to try to make my first batch of kimchi. The process isn't super hard but there is a wait time of a couple of hours while the cabbage takes a briny bath.  

The Recipe: Green Cabbage Kimchi (Yangbaechu Kimchi) from Korean Bapsang (I would recommend using the salted shrimp in the recipe that you can find in the refrigerated section of a Korean grocery). 
The Results: I would say it doesn't taste exactly like grandma's kimchi but it is not a failed first attempt. I would definitely increase the amount of garlic in my second batch and maybe even more red pepper flakes. And maybe even next time, I'll try to make the ubiquitous napa cabbage version. 

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