One Korean food that I am dying to eat right now is a bowl of hot bone marrow soup (설렁탕, seolleongtang) and this kkakdugi kimchi as a side dish.
I was lucky to get a bunch of Korean radish the other day and I am so~ so~ so~ excited to share this wonderful recipe with you.
I was craving for the restaurant style cubed radish kimchi. I did some search to find out the secrets of restaurant recipes. And the answers I found have two similar ingredients that I already knew that they use in radish kimchi. One is the carbonated drink, and the other is the sweetened yogurt drink.
It is not so much different in terms of making the kimchi itself in home style vs restaurant style. And many home-cooks have been using the carbonated drink (such as sprite or 7-up) in their radish kimchi to mimic the restaurant flavor. Yogurt drink (such as Yakult) is another new idea, but I can’t prove how it will work since I don’t have any access to the Yakult where I live now.
But.., you will be surprised to see what I added in the recipe to mimic the flavor. And it turned out to be the best Kkakdugi I ever made. No joke!
Did I make you excited?
Before we start, let’s adore our star of the show for a moment; the Korean radish!
You can add the green leafy parts of the radish if you want. I usually don’t. Instead, I freeze them and use them in the soup later on. Delicious!
Slice the radish into 3/4-1 inch thick disks, then slice into cubes. They will reduce in size as they go ferment, so don’t cube them too small.
In a large bowl or kitchen sink, sprinkle salt and sugar, and toss. Let them soak for 45-60 minutes.
Some people add carbonated drink to mimic the taste at this stage but I don’t think it is necessary in this recipe.
When the soaking part is done, rinse the radish cubes once, drain, and place them in a large shallow bowl. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of Korean chili flakes and toss well. This extra chili flakes will help radish to keep the vibrant red color.
In a blender, add diced onion, garlic, ginger, salted shrimps.
Now here comes the “IT” factor of this recipe!
“Is this milk?” Yes, it is. How bizarre to add milk in kimchi?
Well, all I can say is that it DOES the wonder. Milk will create a gas during the fermentation and it adds a very good flavor to the radish kimchi. It won’t curdle, but makes your kimchi very desirable in both taste and texture.
Add the chili flakes and anchovy sauce to the onion/milk mixture. I added Korean style corn syrup to the mixture. You can substitute the corn syrup with sugar instead.
Pour over to the radish cubes. Add some chopped green onion to bring the contrast color!
Toss together. Taste and adjust your seasoning by adding more anchovy sauce and sugar.
Here is how to Store Kimchi:
Store them in a airtight container (Glass container with an airtight lid is the best), and let it sit on the room temperature for 1-2 days depends on your room temperature. You will see some bubbles forming on the surface. Then transfer to the refrigerator and continue to ferment for 7 days. You might want to keep a box or two of baking soda in your fridge to keep the odor off, so the smell won’t smear into the other food items. Nobody won’t appreciate the kimchi smell in their milk.
Below is the picture of my radish kimchi after 7 days of fermentation. Perfectly crunch and refreshingly cool! So good that I just keep eating one after another.
Now, my Kkakdugi motivates me to cook up some nice bone-marrow soup to serve together. But for the moment, I just serve myself with a bowl of instant ramen noodle soup with it. Delicious!
Cubed Radish Kimchi, Kkakdugi
- 2 medium size Korean radish
- 1/4 cup Korean coarse sea salt
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- 5 tablespoon Korean chili flakes
- 1/2 large onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 " piece ginger chopped
- 2 tablespoon salted shrimps
- 5 tablespoon milk
- 1-2 tablespoon anchovy sauce
- 2 tablespoon Korean corn syrup or 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 green onion diced
- Clean the radish with a kitchen brush and rise well. Slice it into 3/4-1 inch disks, then slice into cubes.
- Place the radish cubes in a large mixing bowl or in a kitchen sink (with the drainage closed), sprinkle salt and 2 tablespoon sugar, and toss well. Let them sit for 45-60 minutes tossing once to soak evenly. Rinse the radish once and drain well.
- Put the radish in a large mixing bowl and sprinkle 1 tablespoon of Korean chili flakes and toss. Set aside.
- In a blender, combine onion, garlic, ginger, salted shrimps, and milk. Process until smooth. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add 4 tablespoon Korean chili flakes, anchovy sauce, and corn syrup (or sugar). Mix well and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- Combine the radish cubes and green onion, pour the chili filling, and toss all together until every radish cubes are well coated with the filling. Taste and adjust seasoning with more anchovy sauce and sugar according to your taste.
- Transfer the radish kimchi into an airtight container and let it sit in the room temperature for 1-2 days, then store in the refrigerator for 7 days for a good fermentation before you serve. Enjoy!