Chonggak Kimchi / “Bachelor” Kimchi

총각김치
There are many varieties of Korean radish that are used in making kimchi. Chonggak Kimchi is a variety of whole radish (including greens) kimchi that is popular throughout Korea. It is also one of the easiest varieties of kimchi to make.

In ancient times unmarried Korean men wore their hair in a “top knot” style of ponytail. The variety of radish used to make Bachelor Kimchi resembles this men’s hairstyle and so was named “Bachelor Radish”

Ingredients

3 bunches (about 12) Chonggak — (Korean ponytail radishes)

1 cup of salt

Seasoning Paste

1 tablespoon salt

1 head garlic

4 hot red chili peppers

2 ounces ginger root

1 bunch green onions

1/2 cup Korean ground dried red chili powder

1 tablespoon Saeujeot — (새우젓 salted fermented shrimp)

 

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Preparation:

  • Radish
    • Wash radish with greens attached carefully in cold water (peel if needed to remove skin blemishes)and drain well.
    • Place the radishes (with greens attached) into a large bowl and sprinkle with salt, turning to ensure all radishes and greens are well salted.
    • Let stand for about 30 minutes, then rinse and drain.
  • Seasoning Paste
    • Separate and peel the garlic.
    • Cut peppers in half lengthwise and remove the stem and seeds.
    • Peel the ginger and cut into smaller pieces.
    • Place the garlic, ginger, and peppers into a blender with just enough water to blend into a smooth paste.
    • Trim the green onion to remove roots and discolored leaves, rinse well in cold water, and cut into roughly 1 1/2 inch long pieces.
    • Place all ingredients into a mixing bowl and mix well, adding small amounts of water if needed to maintain a pourable paste.
  • Final
    • Rub the seasoning paste into the radishes and attached greens, then place into one or more clear glass jars, making sure to leave room at the top for expansion.
    • Let stand at room temperature for 24 to 48 hours, then refrigerate.
    • Serve cold or at room temperature as part of a ban chan array with Korean meals.

Tips

Use gloves when mixing any type of hot peppers.