- Skill Level: Easy
- Cost: Inexpensive
- Favorited: 12 Times
Can be made ahead of time.
I love all things acidic and salty. If you add crunch and spicy heat to these qualities, you have the Korean cabbage pickle called kimchi. Like sauerkraut, which is also made of cabbage, kimchi takes days to make, so I’d resigned myself to eating it only in Korean restaurants.
Then inspiration struck. Once upon a time I never made dill pickles because that process is so detailed and painstaking; then I doped out a way to make a quick cucumber pickle. There had to be a way to make quick kimchi. In fact, I came up with two ways, one that has to sit at room temperature for 2 hours and one that’s almost instant because it starts with sauerkraut. Both are absolutely delicious and will add a unique crunch and heat to any recipe.
1. Trim off the core end of the cabbage. Split each leaf lengthwise and cut it crosswise into 1½-inch ribbons (about 4 cups). Combine the cabbage and salt in a nonreactive bowl and set aside at room temperature for 2 hours.
2. Bring the vinegar, sugar, paprika, and cayenne to a boil over high heat in a small saucepan.
3. Meanwhile, finely chop the bell pepper (about ½ cup) and transfer it to a medium bowl. Trim and thinly slice the scallions (a heaping 1/3 cup) and peel and Microplane-grate the ginger (about 1 tablespoon); transfer each to the bowl with the bell pepper as it is prepared. Press the garlic (about 1 teaspoon) into the bowl.
4. Drain, rinse, and thoroughly dry the cabbage; add it to the bell pepper mixture along with the vinegar mixture and stir until thoroughly combined. Pack the kimchi into a nonreactive bowl or jar, cover, and refrigerate until you are ready to use it. Kimchi will keep in the refrigerator for about 1 week.
Quicker Kimchi (Makes about 2 cups, 10 minute prep time, 15 minute cooking time):
Drain, rinse, and thoroughly dry 1 cup sauerkraut. Prepare the recipe as above, substituting the sauerkraut for the salted cabbage with no standing time, and serve right away.
Nutritional information is based on 8 servings.