Cabbage Kimchi is the oldest and most traditional type of cabbage kimchi. It is also highly prized when done well. This particular fermentation method requires that you use more, not less, heads of cabbage.
2 large Nappa cabbages
1 cup kosher salt
1/4 cup salted baby shrimp (ideally Korean brand)
1/4 cup anchovy sauce (ideally Korean brand)
3 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon grated ginger
1 teaspoon sugar
1 Asian pear (or Bosc pears), peeled and grated
1 cup Korean chile pepper flakes
1 1/2 pounds of daikon radish (medium-sized), julienned into 2-inch strips
1/4 cup sweet rice-flour
1 cup cold water
Brine the Cabbage
Halve the cabbages. (If very large, quarter them.)
Sprinkle half a cup of salt on all parts of the cabbage. Rub extra salt on the hardcore and on the thicker part of the leaves
Stack the halved (or quartered) cabbages in a large stainless bowl or stock pot.
Let the cabbage dry brine in the bowl or pot as is for 30 to 40 minutes
Fill the bowl or pot with cold water and dissolve the remaining half a cup of salt in the water. Taste to make sure it tastes like the Caribbean Sea.
Place something heavy on top of the floating cabbages to keep them submerged underwater.
Let it brine while you sleep (eight to 10 hours is ideal). You want to be sure the thickest outer leaves are wilted. If still firm, keep it in the brine for an additional hour or so. The color of the cabbage will be bright green and yellow.
Prepare the Seasoning Paste
In a food processor (metal blade), pulse all the seasoning paste ingredients, EXCEPT chile pepper flakes and julienned daikon radish.
Mix in porridge paste.
Put on gloves and mix in chile pepper flakes and julienned daikon radish with the seasoning paste. Let it sit for at least 20 minutes.
Preparing the Porridge Paste
Prepare an ice bath.
In a bowl, whisk the sweet rice flour into a one-quarter cup of water.
In a small saucepan, bring three-quarter cups of water to a boil.
Add the rice flour mixture to the boiling water and stir until the mixture thickens, and turns gluey.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and lay it on the ice bath.
Bring the mixture to room temperature by stirring it. Do not use it until it has sufficiently cooled.
Stuffing and Storing
Take one of the cabbage halves (or quarters) and spread a generous amount of seasoning between the leaves, working from the outermost leaf inward.
Slather the seasoning on the cut sides of the cabbage.
Fold the outer leaves over the cut sides, like the way you would swathe a baby.
Carefully pack the cabbages as tightly as possible into a container.
Add water to ensure there is no gap between the cabbages and the closed lid.
Make sure the cabbages are completely submerged.
Cover the lid tightly and let it sit at room temperature, away from direct light, for four to five days.
Refrigerate and start consuming. (Is good for up to one year.) Enjoy!