Making Kimchi with Seasonal Vegetables


Note from Shannon: I am pleased to bring the voices of our lovely contributors to this space every Tuesday. Please welcome Suzanne, Cultures for Health Customer Representative and Cultured Kitchen-Keeper.

Every Tuesday, I pick up my vegetable box from a local farm, gazing in wonder at all the amazing vegetables. This week, my focus went immediately to the Napa cabbage and bunch of green onions…Kimchi!

I have used other recipes, with very detailed soaking and salting instructions, but this week, to save time, I decided to use the Simple Kimchi Recipe, with a few variations. I only received one head of cabbage and one bunch of onions, so I halved the recipe.

I love to add grated carrots to my sauerkraut, so why not to kimchi, as well? If you use a box grater like I do, leave the large end on your carrot while grating, to keep from scraping your knuckles on the grater. Ouch!


I added 3 medium-sized carrots, finely grated, to this batch. Also, just for fun, I added a coarsely grated turnip.

Once all the veggies were prepared, I added them to my 3-gallon crock and sprinkled them with salt. I always knead my vegetables by hand, so I left the hot peppers out until the end.


Since I am short, it’s easier for me to work with my crock when it’s placed on a chair, as I prefer kneading by hand, rather than pounding with a tool.

I knead the vegetables until there is enough liquid to cover everything completely. This combination of vegetables required just a couple of minutes’ kneading.

I added in one jalapeño pepper, minced, for a little kick, and pressed everything down until it was covered with the liquid. Then I put a plate into the crock, resting on top of the vegetables, with a jar of water on top to weigh it down, covered the crock with a dish towel, and let it sit for 3 days.


We’ve had a few days of wonderful summer weather, so I had to put the crock in a back bedroom that stays cool. I prefer to allow vegetables to culture longer at cooler temperatures, for a better texture, but with no air conditioning, the options are limited. So I let the kimchi culture for 2 days, then stored it in a jar in the fridge, where it will continue to culture slowly and develop in flavor…if it lasts that long.



Suzanne is into gardening, real food, and treading lightly. Her favorite cultured foods include Matsoni yogurt, which tastes just like the yogurt her Armenian grandmother used to make; sauerkraut, which she used to dip out of a barrel each week at her favorite little shop in Germany; and dill pickles, which she used to eat straight from the big jar on the counter of her Grandpa’s general store.

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