After having read “Nothing to Envy” by Barbara Demick, I wanted to try to make Kimchi myself. This is my first attempt and I will modify the recipe as I keep making it.
Wash the cabbage and quarter it, take out the stem, and cut into slices (thickness up to you, whatever you want your kimchi to look like). Cut the stem into thin slices and add. Peel the carrot and cut into thin strips (as you would for a stir-fry). Put the cabbage and carrots in a bowl and compress, dissolve the salt in water and fill the bowl so that the water just about covers the cabbage when pressed down. Let the cabbage sit for at least two hours and turn once or twice and compress again.
Whilst the cabbage is pickling, peel the apples and chop them finely, then peel the garlic and chop it (yes, one bulb, not one clove) and chop the onion. Blend together with the chili flakes, sugar and rice vinegar.
Now cut the spring onions into 1cm bits (cut diagonally for looks) and mix with the blended paste.
When the cabbage has pickled (if you have more time, leave it over night), wash it three times in fresh water to get some of the salt out. Let it drip in a colander a bit and then mix it with the blended paste. Fill in glass jars, using a wooden spoon to compress the kimchi and to get out any air bubbles. There should be enough liquid to cover the kimchi. Close the jars. Store in a cool place (e.g. fridge) for at least 3 days before you try. (You can try the fresh kimchi before you bottle it - if you like it, eat it fresh!).
The jars should keep for up to a year without problems. Traditionally, kimchi is kept in earthen pots buried in the garden.