4tablespoonscoarse sea saltless if using table salt, about 3 tablespoons)
1/4cupKorean red chili pepper flakes, gochugaru (고추가루)(add 1 more tablespoon for spicier kimchi)
3tablespoonssalted shrimp, saeujeot (새우젓)finely chopped, (or fish sauce)
Remove tough outer leaves of the cabbage if any. Cut the cabbage head into quarters and remove the core from each quarter. Cut each quarter into bite-sized pieces (about 2-inch squares). Rinse the cabbage and drain.
Place the cabbage in a large bowl. Dissolve the salt in 2 cups of water, and toss well to coat evenly. Leave it for an hour or 2 until the cabbages have softened, flipping over once or twice halfway through or every 30 minutes. Rinse the salted cabbage once, and drain to remove excess water.
Mix the chili pepper flakes (gochugaru), saeujeot, sugar, garlic, and ginger with 1/2 cup of water.
Add the chopped scallions, the gochugaru mix, and 1 cup of water to the salted cabbage.
Using a kitchen glove, mix everything well by hand until the cabbage pieces are well coated with the gochugaru mix.
Place in an airtight container or a jar, pressing down hard to remove air pockets. Leave it out in room temperature for half a day or overnight. Then, refrigerate.
This recipe was originally posted in July 2011. I've updated it here with new photos, more information and an improved recipe.