Korean Radish

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    This is more of a rant than a question or comment. I live in a smallish town and the only Korean Radish I can buy are these long dicon radishes. They have no green tops and usually they are not very firm–kind of rubbery. I have this great kimchi cookbook that has many radish recipes. It’s so frustrating




    i know what you mean. I live in California, and all they sell at safeway are those really long radishes.. they are still crunch though.. :/ i love korean radishes! :p



    You can still make kaktugi with those radishes (and possibly any other radish sidedish), yes the result may be slightly less but you will have to adapt to your current situation and using daikon over korean radish isn’t a very great sacrifice in my opinion.

    Now what irritates ME is that I can’t find bu chu, perilla leaves, edible chrysanthemum, minari… :(. And I couldn’t think of a good substitute for them.

    Can European chives be used as a substitute for Asian chives?



    I’ve never tried this, but I met a Korean American chef who told me that you can use large American turnips for kkaktugi-like kimchi as well. Perhaps dandelion greens could be a substitute for chrysanthemum greens? European chives definitely are not the same as Asian ones–they had more of a garlic flavor. You can sometimes find them labeled as “garlic chives.” In recipes like kimchi that call for buchu, I think scallions are a better alternative than European chives.

    I live in New York and have trouble gardening, but if you have any land or space for some containers, you could try growing some of these vegetables. That’s what my friend did when she was living in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I haven’t used this company, but they seem to have seeds for everything: http://www.kitazawaseed.com/index.html. Perilla leaves in particular grow REALLY well, like weeds. You don’t have to be an accomplished gardener to grow them!



    Hmm I have never tried to eat Dandelion Greens (although I do know they can be picked and eaten). Perhaps in the spring I will pick some from the local park – free salad! ;)

    What I can sometimes find here is ‘garlic stems’ which are like green stems but have a garlic taste – is this the same thing (or an acceptable substitute)?

    Yes I am thinking about growing some Perilla (I couldn’t grow too much in my tiny little garden, but I can also pot them of course). What temperatures can they stand? In winter, temperature varies from -5 to +5 C, and in summer from like 13 to 27 C.



    Are garlic stems what we in the northeast U.S. call garlic scapes? Looks like this:


    I don’t think they would wilt in the right way, though Koreans do make banchan with them. I think you’re better off with green onions/scallions for most recipes.

    I’m definitely not an expert gardener, and the seed packet on perilla seeds would probably tell you more, but when I planted it in a container in NY, it started really sprouting in July and kept going until it just froze. It might have lasted longer if I’d brought it indoors.



    No I don’t know the garlic stems/scrapes that you posted in the picture. I’ll give you a picture of what I mean (maangchi calls them ‘garlic stems': http://www.maangchi.com/ingredients/garlic-stems)


    http://mangerie.blogspot.com/2007/06/knoflookstengels.html (scroll down)



    What’s really strange to me is that I’ve tasted manil-jjong, and they taste like garlic scapes, but they don’t look like them. Here is a picture of a Korean side dish I had made with them and some dried shrimp:


    Anyway, you can see that even when cooked, they stay firm and crunchy, and they don’t behave like buchu. Now I’m totally confused. Does anyone else know if garlic stems and garlic scapes are related?

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