People who have a palate for fiery chilis and garlic love kimchi. However, there are others who just can't work up their taste buds to entertain all that red hot drama. Well, here's a recipe with apple added in which adds a touch of tangy sweetness to balance the intense piquancy of traditional kimchi.
- 1 lb (450 g) Napa cabbage, cut into approximately 1" x 2" (2.5 x 5 cm) pieces
- 2 Tablespoons (30 ml) sea salt, divided
- 3 Tablespoons (45ml) gochugaru* (Korean red pepper flakes)
- 2 - 3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) Sucanat or natural cane sugar
- 3 oz. (85 g) daikon, peeled, and cut into small pieces
- 1 medium firm Fuji apple
- 3 stalks scallion, chopped
1. Put the cut cabbage in a large glass, stainless steel, or ceramic mixing bow and sprinkle 1 Tablespoon (5 ml) of salt onto the cabbage. Massage the salt in with your hands for a couple of minutes. Set aside for about 30 minutes.
2. Place the remaining salt, gochugaru, and garlic into a mortar and pestle. Grind until a paste is formed.
(Mortar and pestle is a two-piece kitchen tool that dates back thousands of years and it's perfect for for making a spice paste or for grinding whole spices.)
3. Add in the other ingredients and mix well.
4. Add the gochugaru paste into the cabbage-apple mixture and mix well.
(You may want to wear gloves, or use a pair of tongs for the mixing so that your hands don't get stained.)
5. Pack the kimchi mixture, including the liquid that has been released, into a quart-size mason jar.
6. Using a wooden spoon or rolling pin, pound down the mixture to help release more liquid. Firmly pack down the cabbage mixture until it's level with the shoulder of the jar, and that there is one inch (2.5 cm) of brine above the top of the vegetables.
7. Place Kraut Source onto the jar. Allow to ferment between 7 - 10 days in a cool spot, away from direct sunlight. Check every few days that there is water in the moat, and top off as needed.
8. Replace Kraut Source with a standard mason jar lid and ring. Transfer to the refrigerator.
Note: As Napa cabbage releases a lot of water, keep an eye on your kimchi during the first 24 - 48 hours. There should be about one inch (2.5 cm) of liquid above the top of the vegetables, so pour off excess if it looks like it will over flow.
*Gochugaru, or Korean red pepper flakes, is widely available in Asian grocery stores.