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Day 122 – Kitchen Therapy – Homemade Kimchi — Scripting Happiness

Day 122 – Kitchen Therapy – Homemade Kimchi

Before I get to homemade Kimchi, let’s talk about cutting an onion. My friend Lorene shared this TED Talk with me by Cynthia Lair. Cynthia talks about cooking as meditation. After I watched the video, something just clicked. Food tastes better when you pay attention and are mindful when preparing it. I’ve always found the experience of cooking to be relaxing but never thought about it as meditation.

Over the past week  I practiced mindfulness while cooking. I’d notice where my thoughts are, the sensation of preparing the food and the taste. Whenever my mind would wonder off, I’d come back to the act of cooking. This simple practice has really made food taste better and has improved my mental health. I call it Kitchen Therapy.

My favorite part of Cynthia’s talk is when she suggested you give food “intention and attention” – perfectly said.


Now, onto homemade Kimchi. 

I’ve seen my mom make Kimchi hundreds of time growing up and I certainly had my share of helping her make it. But this was the first time I made Kimchi on my own. I did have her assist virtually via. FaceTime. Thank goodness for technology.



1 Napa Cabbage (cut into long strips)
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup Korean hot pepper (available at Korean grocery store or buy on Amazon) Adjust according to your preference.
5 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon ginger, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoon, toasted sesame seed
2 – 3 tablespoon, water
1/2 cup sea salt

1. Cut cabbage in half. Remove stem by cutting a “v” into the center of the cabbage halves. Cut leaves into long strips. If you like, cut into approximately 4″ length. Generously salt. Let it sit for 1 hour.

2. Mix fish sauce, hot pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar, sesame seed and water into small bowl. Stir until well blended.

3. Rinse cabbage and let it drain in colander for 20 minutes.

4. Combine cabbage and pepper mixture in large bowl. (I suggest you wear gloves and mix by hand.) Let it sit for 2 hours. Put Kimchi into jars. (You want to stuff the jars really tight with Kimchi.) Let it sit at room temperature for 24 hours. Store in fridge.


Chop cabbage.  Generously sprinkle sea salt and let it rest for 1 hour.

Prepare pepper mixture.

Rinse cabbage in cold water.

Allow it to drain for 20 minutes.

Mix cabbage with prepared pepper paste by hand. (I think every Korean household has one of these hot pink gloves.) Be sure to wear gloves for this step! Let it rest for 2 hours.

Stuff those jars! Let it sit for 24 hours at room temperature then store in fridge. Enjoy!

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