The napa cabbages have grown jy-normous! Harvested six and had no room for any of them in the fridge, so did what I usually do: make kimchi with most of it, and keep a bags worth in the fridge for stir frying or soup. It’s really easy to make and all that’s needed, aside from the napa cabbage, is garlic, ginger, onion, chilli flakes, salt, and fish sauce . . . . which I use according to how gingery or garlicky or spicy or fishy I want it.
First the cabbages have to be de-leafed and washed, leaf by leaf. I stack them on the counter as I wash them. Then they get shredded as best as possible with a knife, and put in a 5 gallon bucket. Six napa cabbages will fill a 5 gallon bucket to the top. As the bucket gets filled, salt gets sprinkled over top and mixed in. Each cabbage takes 1/2 cup of salt, so use accordingly. Once everything’s salted and done, the bucket gets filled with cold water and the cabbage sits for about 4 hours or longer; I left it out overnight.
Now we make a paste out of the garlic, ginger, onion, chilli flakes, and fish sauce. The cabbage is drained and lightly rinsed. It’ll be about 1/3 full in the 5 gallon bucket. Always surprising to see how it shrinks! The paste is rubbed all over the leaves, then I pack it into 1 gallon jars and put the jars in the basement for 2-10 days, or until I see little bubbles inside. Then it goes into the fridge, where it stays until eaten up . . . .we all like it on it’s own but with brown rice it’s even yummier, especially with a bit of beef. Sometimes I’ve added shredded carrots and apples and beets to the cabbages in the pasting stage, and the combination is really good, but when those aren’t on hand napa cabbage still makes good kimchi on her own :0)