Olivia’s Raw-Vegan Kimchi

Well known in it’s native Brighton and Hove, this cheeky little Kimchi will knock your socks off and give your gut health a boot too.

When I was young my neighbours and best friends were twin boys from Korea.
Their mum used to make kimchi by the bathtub load (literally in the bathtub!).

It was incredible. You could smell it fermenting up the street. So from the age of 3 I developed a love for kimchi. Kimchi is pretty much eaten with every meal in Korea and there are hundreds of different types of Kimchi made using a variety of vegetables and spices.  The most common type is made from Chinese Leaf (Napa) cabbage, Daikon radish, spring onions, Korean red pepper flakes, garlic, and ginger.  Salted seafood (eg fish, squid, oysters), soy sauce, and glutenous rice paste is also often added to create more depth of flavour. There are some amazingly delicious kimchi’s out there and I intend to try and make as many as possible.

When I created this recipe I wanted to make it as fresh and clean as possible using only raw and easily available ingredients. This recipe is also vegan and gluten free. It has a really refreshing flavour. I really hope you enjoy it!

Here’s How to make it:


  • Large bowl
  • Cutting board
  • knife
  • Clean 1 litre jar with lid
  • Food processor/ spice blender
  • Measuring jug
  • scales



  • 500 g of Chinese Leaf cut into 1-2inch strips or Savoy Cabbage or white cabbage sliced
  • 5 grams (approx. 1 level teaspoons) good quality sea salt (e.g. Celtic Sea Salt or Himalayan Pink Salt or any good sea salt).
  • 4 tablespoons tamari sauce
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1-5 red chillies (depending on your desired spiciness!) or 50-75 Korean red pepper flakes (Gochugaru)
  • 1 red pepper chopped and deseeded (only if not using the (Gochugaru)
  • 300g Mooli Radish (or any type of radish you can source ie red radishes) thinly sliced or cut into matchsticks
  • 1 medium size carrots -grated
  • 4 spring onion cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 30-50ml of tamari/soy sauce
  • ½ small onion
  • Cut the cabbage across the leaves into 1-2-inch-wide strips.


  • Place the cabbage and salt in the bowl


  • Using clean hands massage the cabbage, squeezing it  between your fingers, thus breaking down the cellular structure of the cabbage. Continue doing this for 10-15 mins.  You will know that the cabbage has been sufficiently broken down when it has become limp and has released its juices. Drain this juice/liquid away.  It will make the kimchi to watery if you keep it.  The cabbage should still be slightly salty


  • Add the radish, carrot, and spring onion


  • In the food processor make a paste with the garlic, ginger, chillies, pepper and sugar.


  • Mix the chilli paste into the cabbage, radish, carrots, and spring onion mixture.


  • Pack the jar tightly with the mixture pushing it firmly down to be completely submerged in its liquid. Add any liquid left in the bowl to ensure it’s completely submerged.  Leave about ¾ inch from the top of your jar to prevent overflow once the fermentation begins.


  • Place the lid loosely on top. As fermentation begins gases will form and bubble so it’s quite common to get liquid spilling over the sides. It’s best to place the jar inside a container or on a plate to catch the liquid. Check the  jar every few days to release the gasses and ensure everything is nicely submerged.


  • Allow the jar to sit out of direct sunlight.


  • The kimchi can be eaten unfermented as a ‘prebiotic salad’ or ferment at room temperature for 3-4 days and place in the fridge. If using savoy or white cabbage allow it to ferment for a 7 days.


  • It will continue to ferment in the fridge and eventually become quite sour over time.


  • Remember to keep pushing the kimchi down with a spoon to release the gases and keep it submerged in its liquid.