What to grow?

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    • #48764

      I’m in the process of learning to cook Korean dishes (also Thai and Vietnamese).

      I’m wondering what kind of vegetables I should grow in my garden this year. I don’t have access to an Asian market, the nearest thing to it (and it wasn’t very near, it was a Lebanese Gyro shop that stocked a few Asian things as well) closed this past summer.

      My seed sources are



      I already have garlic chives, sweet thai basil, sacred or holy basil, lemon basil, cilantro, and one variety of napa cabbage. I have lots of different kinds of eggplant, tomato, and peppers (I have been cooking Indian food for 30 years now, so I have a couple of hot pepper varieties and several Asian varieties of eggplant).

      I know little or nothing about herbs, greens, and other vegetables used in Korean cooking (cucumber, radish – surely when these are called for they’re not talking about the varieties typically grown in American gardens).

      Any help?

    • #51922

      I would like to grow Korean perilla leaves (깻잎: kkaenip in Korean) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Kkk.jpg

      What would you grow?

    • #51923

      I love soups, so I would recommend garland/edible chrysanthemum. I think it’s referred to as sookgat? Really easy to grow and has a very distinctive flavor that I can’t find any substitution for. If you had a watersource nearby, you could also grow the korean watercress. My mother use to grow this in one of those plastic kiddie pools, but it was a lot of trouble. Instead, I just buy in bulk, blanch and freeze.

      I second the perilla leaves.

      Low-water content cucumbers are used a lot in Korean dishes. I usually just grab some pickling cukes, but if you have the climate for the Asian ones, go for it. They’re much crunchier and (to me) slightly sweeter than their American cousins. Also, Asian radish is used in a lot of dishes, so it couldn’t hurt to sow a few of these as well.

      Korean melons are delish! If you have a comparable temperature regions, I say go for it! They’re so good…you won’t regret it.

    • #51924

      I can get the perilla leaves at Evergreen seeds. I picked up some Lemongrass seed but I don’t know how well that’ll work out, it’s supposed to be a perennial. The only shop nearby that stocked it went out of business last year so its grow it or do without at this point.

      I’m not big on melon, but my dad is, so I guess I’ll try some of that as well.

      Here’s hoping I got enough of the right things, LOL!

    • #51925

      I’d go for perilla too. i just love the kenyip. I think I can grow it here in Ph but I don’t have enough guts to try. :( I think I even brought the seeds from Korea before we left but…I’m missing kenyip marinaded (?)with soy sauce, or even simply wrap it with rice.

    • #51926

      Perilla leaves are great to have in the garden. they are easy to take care of. water well and keep in full sun. they also work in plant potters on a balcony.

    • #51927

      Right now in pots I have Kkaenip and Korean Peppers.

      If I had time for a garden I would have Kkaenip, Korean Peppers, Korean Cucumber, Korean Radish, Napa Cabbage, Sookgat, Chinese Chives, Korean Squash

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