Korean cooking forum topics:
I have made kimchi successfully three times now, but used cayenne pepper instead of gochugaru out of ignorance (which I thought was delicious). This time I used gochugaru and went to check the kimchi after thee days. The cabbage had floated to the top of the jar with the gochugaru all chunky on top and the fluid at the bottom. Is this normal? Will it affect the fermentation or the taste? Thank you for replies!
That’s interesting. I have seen kimchi juice separate before (clear liquid on top, red liquid on bottom) but never during fermentation and never with gochugaru floating in chunks. It sounds like you have a lot of excess juice. When you mixed the porridge and the gocugaru with the cabbage, was it thick and pastelike? Also, was the cabbage still very wet from brining? Can you post a picture of what it looks like?
I would suggest draining off some liquid so your cabbage isn’t floating and then just mix everything up. As long as its not moldy or really bad smelling (i.e. wrong bacteria growing) then in my opinion it should be recoverable. My last batch had excess liquid in it so I just saved it in a jar and use it when making kimchijeon.
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