2 kg
Earl Carter

This recipe was given to us by my good friend Paul Lee. Paul imports traditional and artisanal products from Korea and is one of our favourite suppliers.


Quantity Ingredient
1 chinese cabbage
2 tablespoons salt

Kimchi base

Quantity Ingredient
5cm piece kombu
2 tablespoons glutinous rice, soaked in water overnight
1 tablespoon glutinous rice flour
5 spring onions, halved lengthways then cut into 4 cm lengths, white part only
60g korean chilli flakes
7 dried bird’s eye chillies, soaked in water for 30 minutes, finely chopped
1 thumb-sized piece fresh ginger, finely chopped
10 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 nashi, peeled and cut into 1.5 mm batons
80ml good-quality fish sauce
1 tablespoon anchovy sauce
2 tablespoons dried fish
2 tablespoons fermented shrimp, finely chopped
60ml fermented plum extract
2 teaspoons caster sugar


  1. To make the kimchi base, put 125 ml water and the kombu in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until just under boiling point, then remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool.
  2. Strain the soaked rice. Put the rice and rice flour in an upright blender with 60 ml of the kombu water and blend until smooth.
  3. Transfer to a small saucepan over low heat and cook until thick and gluey, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  4. Put all the kimchi base ingredients in a large bowl and, wearing latex gloves, mix until well combined. Set aside.
  5. Make a 5 cm cut from the base of the cabbage up into the stem, but not all the way through. Possibly using a knife for initial leverage, work your fingers into the cut and gently pull the cabbage into 2 halves. This prevents shredding the delicate inner leaves.
  6. Mix together the salt and 80 ml water.
  7. Working over a large bowl, brush the salt water over the cabbage, leaf by leaf, taking care not to damage the cabbage. Place the cabbage, face up, in a plastic container and pour over any remaining salt water. Leave to soak for 3 hours.
  8. Turn the cabbage over and leave for another 3 hours.
  9. Remove and rinse under water 3 times. Lightly squeeze out the cabbage and leave to drain in a colander.
  10. In a large bowl take one half of cabbage and, wearing gloves, start at the outer leaves and coat each leaf in the kimchi base, making sure each leaf is well covered and the cabbage remains intact. Continue with the rest of the cabbage and repeat with the other half
  11. Pick up and hold a cabbage half in one hand, fold the outer leaves over and into the inner leaves, as if you’re wrapping a baby up in a blanket.
  12. Place carefully into a plastic container. Top the cabbage with any remaining kimchi base and press down lightly. Cover with a lid and leave at room temperature for 24 hours. Place in the refrigerator for 3 weeks, tasting after 2 weeks. This will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator
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