I just made some kimchi for the first time. Three heads of Napa cabbage. I put it in glass jars and left lots of room. It has been a day and and a half at room temp. and I still don't think it has expanded very much. It has a little liquid but it is just covering the cabbage and it is not bubbling.
I used all fresh ingredients except the garlic. The garlic was from a jar. It was the minced kind. I pureed an onion and ginger in a blender and added the garlic with those at the same time.
Do you think the preservatives in the store-bought minced garlic could have stopped the fermentation? It was only about three tablespoons of the garlic in a three head of cabbage batch.