How to make Kkakdugi 깍두기

I’ve talked about the benefits of good bacteria in my previous post and here, I shall talk about my first time making Kkakdugi (AKA cubed radish kimchi). I’ve never particularly liked radish but it’s now one of my favourite ban chans (반찬: side dishes) because they are crunchy and refreshing. Thank you Maangchi for the recipe. Here’re some photos that I took along the way.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPeel the radishes or daikon.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPrep the garlic, ginger and green onions.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGive every thing a good toss. You may want to use a nicer looking bowl than I did. Haha.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHere’re the little cubes pressed against the glass, like Jack and Rose in Titanic. Heh.

Ingredients:

  • 1kg Korean radish (or Daikon)
  • 1 tbsp salt (Or maybe slightly less than 1 tbsp, depending on your fish sauce)
  • 1.5 tbsp sugar
  • 1/8 cup fish sauce
  • 1/3 cup hot pepper flakes (from a Korean store)
  • 2 stalks of chopped green onions
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
  • 1/2 tsp ginger

Let’s Do it!

  1. Peel the radish.
  2. Rinse in cold water and pat dry.
  3. Cut it into cubes. (1 inch is recommended) Put them in a large bowl.
  4. Add sugar and salt. Mix well.
  5. Set aside for 30 minutes.
  6. Magic happens (Actually, osmosis happens and heaps of water leave the radish so it actually shrinks.)
  7. Drain the juice from the radish into a small bowl
  8. Add garlic, ginger, green onion, fish sauce, hot pepper flakes and 1/6 cup of juice from the radish.
  9. Mix everything well, and the radish looks juicy.
  10. Put the kkakdugi into a glass jar and press down to remove any air between the radish cubes.
  11. You can eat it right away, or let it ferment by keeping it out of the fridge for a few days. When it starts fermenting, little bubbles may appear on the top and it’ll start to smell strong and sour. Store in the refrigerator.

After Action Review:

  • I might have overdone it with the salt. When I read the comments of others who made this with Maangchi’s recipe, a few of them commented that it was too salty. Another reason could be because of the fish sauce used. Different brands have different levels of saltiness so I might try being less heavy handed with salt the next time I try making this.
  • Used a portion of radish I found in the fridge and it was clearly not the freshest of fresh. Some of the pieces in the kkakdugi tasted better than others that had a slightly bitter taste. I suspect those were from the older radish.
  • Joy is what I feel when I bite into a crisp, crunchy piece of kkakdugi that is not too salty. Tee hee!
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Enjoy your home made ban chan at every meal! :]

 

 

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