The gardenia, called chija in Korean, is a plant with beautiful, aromatic white flowers that bears fruit in October. The fruits are a little bitter but have a deep orange color and have been used in Korea as cloth dye and food coloring for a long long time.

You can buy them at Korean markets or on in small bags or in bulk.

gardenia fruit (chija:치자)

As a herbal remedy they are good for fevers, and Koreans often make tea with them. They are also good for arthritis. My grandma used to mix them with flour to create a dough that she would apply to her joints to relieve her arthritis.

gardenia fruit (chija:치자)

Recipes that use gardenia fruits (chija):

One Comment:

  1. Toto Bonn, Germany joined 6/10 & has 37 comments

    Dear Maangchi,
    I’ve searched for an opportunity to make Danmuji by myself, because the sold one contains lots of artificial stuff, I actually don’t want to eat, so I was happy to see your recipe.
    After searching for gardenia I got a bit worried, because I read several articles which say, the whole plant but especially the fruits are toxic! Have you ever heard about that? I mean, even gosari is said to be lightly toxic, when it’s not soaked and boiled several times as you always do in your recipes.
    Greetings from Germany :)

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