Pumpkin Kimchi

Austin Durant, of The Fermenters Club, shows us how to ferment his favorite food: kimchi. There are hundreds of different kinds, but the one he shows today is pumpkin kimchi.

January 30, 2016


  • In a 1-gallon glass or ceramic container, stir salt into room temperature water until dissolved. Submerge sliced pumpkin in the brine, pressing it under the liquid with a plastic lid or plate (place a full water bottle on top for weight). The pumpkin must remain continuously submerged, undisturbed for 4–6 hours. Drain, but don't rinse, the pumpkin in a colander, reserving 1 cup of brine.
  • Combine ginger, garlic and 2 of the chopped scallions in a food processor with the pepper powder, tamari or soy sauce and fish sauce. Pulse until paste forms, adding additional tamari/soy and/or fish sauce until the mixture is the consistency of chunky tomato paste.
  • With clean hands, mix the paste and the remaining scallions into the pumpkin, tossing until nicely coated with paste. Pack into clean jar. Find a clean object, like a smaller glass jar filled with water, to weight the pumpkin down in its Mason jar, submerging the pumpkin so that it is entirely covered by the mixture's liquid. More will be produced as the pumpkin sweats during fermentation. If, after 1 day, the pumpkin is not completely submerged, then top it off with some of the reserved brine.
  • Store in the warmest spot in your kitchen for at least 6 days. Taste, and when kimchi has reached desired potency, secure the jar with a lid and transfer to a refrigerator to stop the fermentation. The kimchi will keep for at least 4 months, but can usually be enjoyed for longer. It will continue to develop in flavor and intensity.

Recipe courtesy of Austin Durant, The Fermenters Club


  • 1 quart filtered water
  • 3 tablespoons sea salt
  • 1 pound raw pumpkin flesh, peeled and sliced ΒΌ-inch thick
  • 3 scallions, chopped in 1-inch pieces
  • 3–5 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 3–4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 ounce dried red pepper powder
  • 1 ounce tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 ounce fish sauce
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