My youngest uncle grows a lot of gaennip (Korean sesame/shiso/perilla leaves) in his garden so I decided to pickle them at the same time I made a batch of kimchee. The only recipes I could find for gaennip leaves were seasoning them with soy sauce and stuff and that didn't appeal to me. I know they're eaten fresh with lettuce wraps but there was quite an abundance of the herb this summer so I was brainstorming ways to preserve them. I'm not sure if Koreans eat this, although both of my Korean friends didn't say anything when I served it at dinner the other night, so it mustn'tve appeared too unusual.
Gaennip leaves taste, to me, like a more green version of tia to (Vietnamese purple shiso/perilla) - slightly minty, slightly herbal. They're sometimes called sesame leaves but that's a misnomer as they're not related to the sesame family at all.
Again, this isn't such a precise recipe as I don't know how big your bunches of leaves are. I grabbed about half a dozen bunches.
Gaennip/Kaennip Kimchee (Korean Pickled Sesame/Shiso/Perilla Leaves)
Adapted from my recipe for baechu kimchi (Korean pickled napa cabbage)
Half a bunches of gaennip leaves or so, about a 2-inch height if you loosely stack them
2 tsp mam ruoc (Vietnamese fermented shrimp paste)
2 tsp nuoc mam (Vietnamese fish sauce)
2 tsp gochujang (Korean chili paste), or more if you like spicy
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-inch knob ginger, minced
Pluck and wash gaennip leaves. Salt in between every other leaf or so. Put the leaves in a bowl with just enough water to cover. Leave for several hours or overnight.
Drain leaves. Mix the rest of the ingredients together until you get a loose paste. Then using a butter knife, put a small schmear of the paste in between every other leaf, or every third leaf or so until all the chili paste is used up.
Fold up the whole stack and place into a jar. Adding water until the leaves are covered. Leave in a cool, dark place to ferment. This takes about a week.