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One of the trickier aspects of making homemade kimchi is getting the right balance of flavors. That's why we were happy to discover Mama's O's Vegan Kimchi Paste, a ready-to-use ingredient unlike anything else on the market—all you need is a head of napa cabbage (or other vegetable) and water. Company founder Kheedim Oh says it best: “All the mixing, measuring, juicing, grinding, chopping and shopping are already done in the jar.” The paste is balanced between savory, salty and spicy flavors and great for more than making kimchi. Use it to marinate meat, season stir-fries or flavor soups.
How to make napa cabbage kimchi:
Make a brine using 1 tablespoon salt per 1 cup water. Chop napa cabbage into 1.25-inch pieces. Submerge in the salt brine and let sit at room temperature overnight (about 8 hours). Drain and rinse well. For about 1 pound of cabbage, use ¼ cup paste and ¼ cup water. Mix well (we recommend using a gloved hand). Transfer to the jar, packing tightly. Cover, ideally with cheese cloth to allow gas to escape, or with a non-airtight lid. Let sit at room temperature for 2 days, or until pickled to your preference. Vent occasionally to release built-up pressure; optionally, place on a plate to catch drips. (Any fermented product will leak through lids as pressure builds.)
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