After a week of cooking with Korean Short Ribs, I was drawn to create my own Kimchi. This is inspired from attending a cooking school with with Edward Lee years ago at Stonewall Kitchen with my mother. Thank you Edward Lee and Smoke & Pickles for the recipe guidance and inspiration!

I love pickles and creating yummy condiments and Kimchi is right in wheelhouse. What I ❤️ is creating my own spin because I can modify based on what I have available and my favorite flavor profiles of acid and spice.

The few modifications I’ve made to the traditional recipe include:

  • Most authentic recipes suggest daikon radish, but since my grocery store didn’t have them, I improvised with extra onion. Yes, I know it isn’t so authentic now 😉
  • I opted for Korean Chile Paste over Korean Chile Flakes because I had Gochujang in my fridge.
  • I didn’t want to buy fermented shrimp and I used fish sauce instead. Again, this might have removed some of the authenticity, but fish sauce adds the umaminess and saltiness!
  • I also added rice wine vinegar because if this will ferment, I thought why not add the acid of a vinegar!

Kimchi Ingredients

  • 1 large head of Napa cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 12 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup Kosher salt

Paste to thicken

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup rice vinegar
  • 3/4 cups rice flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Spice blend 

  • 2 sweet white onions, chopped
  • 10 clove of garlic, smashed and chopped
  • 3 inches of ginger, smashed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup Gochujang
  • 1 small spice bottle of Korean Red Pepper, Gochugaru
Traditional recipes call for 2+ cups of Korean Chile Flakes, which I couldn’t find and I settled on Gochugaru.


1. Devein the napa cabbage by cutting down the center and removing the inner thick core and place in a large bowl or pot.

2. Add your Kosher salt to the cabbage and add enough cold water to cover the cabbage. Using a wood spoon; stir the salt, cabbage and water together. Allow your cabbage to soak at room temperature for 2-3hrs.

3. Once the cabbage has soaked, rinse with cold water to remove the salt and squeeze the excess water from the cabbage and place on a towel to absorb any excess water.

4. Create the paste combining the water, vinegar, rice flour and sugar. Whisk until on a low simmer until a paste has developed.

5. Now time for your spice blend. Add those ingredients to a food processor until well blended.

6. Fold your paste into your spice blend and mix until well combined.

8. Using cooking gloves, fold the spice paste into your cabbage, carrots and green onions.

9. Mix until your everything is coated with the spice paste.

10. Now transfer the Kimchi and into two 32oz ball jars with tight-fitting lids.

11. Let the jars sit at room temperate for 2-3 days and then refrigerate. The Kimchi will be ready in 4-5 days and will keep in your refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

12. Enjoy with meats, in a ramen bowl, on a grilled cheese, in fried rice or as a yummy condiment! I plan to make a Jackie’s Treat on Friday, either Kimchi Queso or Kimchi Poutine 😋, stay tuned!


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