Korean Culinary Remedies: From Tummy Aches To Hangovers, Right here's How Mothers Prepare dinner Up Aid

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The writer’s mom, Jenna Cho, keeping a pot of samgyetang in her house in Mercer Island, Wash.

Eileen Cho/for NPR

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Eileen Cho/for NPR

In first grade, I used to be hospitalized with pneumonia for over every week. I be mindful having to take an antibiotic syrup that gave me acid reflux disease. Straight away once I swallowed it, my Korean immigrant mom spoon-fed me a home made liquid with small items of boiled Korean pear (bae), spices, and honey. This was once her tackle baesuk, a Korean fruit punch/tea, that she delivered to the clinic in a thermos. I commit it to memory lulled my abdomen and soothed my throat and chest. The Korean-American pediatrician who oversaw my remedy on the clinic instructed my mother that he wanted he had thought of feeding me this concoction first.

After I used to be discharged, I vomited for a number of days with an disillusioned abdomen from all of the medications I needed to take. My mother would keep up overdue, soaking rice in water to make me jook, Korean rice porridge, within the morning. I at all times related jook with medication, because it at all times magically made my abdomen really feel higher. My mother relied on Western medication, however she additionally appeared to Korean meals therapies to assist with prevention and treating my signs.

Cooking meals to appease ill youngsters is a ritual for moms all over the world. However in Korea, some meals are broadly believed to assist deal with illnesses, spice up well being and save you illness.

Koreans were the usage of meals as therapies because the days when monarchs dominated Korea. The most productive-known written documentation of those culinary therapies is located in Donguibogam (동의보감), edited through the royal doctor Heo Jun all through the Joseon dynasty within the 17th century. Donguibogam, which interprets as “a useful ebook of medications,” is composed of 25 volumes — an encyclopedia of varieties — that discover how illnesses impact organs and what will also be achieved to regard and save you sicknesses. This ebook remains to be very talked-about and broadly utilized by Japanese Drugs medical doctors in every single place Asia and was once added to the UNESCO Reminiscence of the Global Sign in in 2009.

Whilst the analysis at the medicinal powers of many of those meals is scant, trust of their healing houses is common. Here is a take a look at one of the most hottest Korean therapeutic dishes.

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Samgyetang (삼계탕), rooster with ginseng soup

Eileen Cho/for NPR

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Samgyetang (삼계탕), rooster with ginseng soup: Samgyetang is a soup made with an entire small rooster filled with glutinous rice, garlic, crimson dates (jujube), peeled chestnuts, and ginseng. (Scroll down for the recipe.) It’s historically ate up scorching through Koreans in the summertime at the warmest days of the yr, as a result of it’s believed to assist keep watch over frame temperatures. (There may be some science to again up this concept.) Many Koreans strongly imagine that ginseng warms up the frame, particularly the tummy, although the science does not appear to toughen this declare.

Kongnamul-guk, soybean sprout soup

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Kongnamul-guk (콩나물국), soybean sprout soup: This will also be served two tactics, with Korean chili flakes for a highly spiced kick or with out. It’s repeatedly believed to assist treatment hangovers in adults. My mother at all times mentioned the saltiness of the soup, blended with the herbal nutrients present in soybean sprouts, helped “blank” the liver and abdomen. Whilst the theory of detox diets is not subsidized up through science, scientists in Korea have discovered some proof — in rats — that soybeans scale back blood concentrations of acetaldehyde (what alcohol breaks all the way down to as you metabolize it).

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The writer’s mom washes seaweed to make miyeok-guk (미역국), seaweed soup.

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Miyeok-guk (미역국), seaweed soup:Miyeok-guk is made with a protein broth, maximum repeatedly pork broth, and miyeok (미역), or seaweed. In Korea, new mothers are given this as a part of their restoration vitamin within the clinic. (It is why miyeok is symbolically loved on birthdays.) As qualified meals scientist Jessica Gavin notes, seaweeds will also be wealthy in minerals like calcium, phosphorus, iron and iodine – all of which can be certainly regarded as necessary all through being pregnant and lactation.Within the U.S., my mother has introduced thermoses to the clinic stuffed with this soup to my aunts after childbirth — and I’m positive she’s no longer the one Korean immigrant who is achieved this.

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Jook (죽), or rice porridge

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Jook (죽), rice porridge: It’s essential evaluate jook to rooster noodle soup. It is a Korean staple for the ill, particularly the ones with stomachaches. It is made through slow-boiling rice that is been omitted to soak in water for plenty of hours. The comfortable, wet texture of the porridge is well swallowed and digested — my mom would force-feed me this each time I used to be nauseous and could not stay different meals down. Jook would at all times calm my abdomen. Many Koreans combine in several substances, akin to pumpkin and abalone, and it’s incessantly loved for breakfast or when convalescing within the clinic.

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A wall of kimchi choices at H Mart in Bellevue, Wash.

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Kimchi (김치), Korean fermented greens: Kimchi is available in loads of permutations. Two varieties repeatedly ate up for well being advantages are ggakdugi, or highly spiced radish kimchi, and mul-kimchi, or water kimchi. Mul-kimchi is incessantly served in the summertime, chilled, and the sunshine however salty brine is under the influence of alcohol as a refreshment — it’s mentioned to hydrate and refill the frame with salts you sweat out. (American athletes were identified to do one thing an identical, in spite of a loss of clinical proof to again up the apply.) Ggakdugi incessantly accompanies soups, akin to seolleongtang, or oxtail soup, ate up when hungover. My mother at all times says the spice of kimchi will “get up your frame and thoughts.”

Baesuk (배숙), Korean pear punch/tea: Baesuk is a conventional Korean punch/tea made through poaching or steaming Korean pear (bae; 배) with black peppercorns, honey, and ginger. If served scorching, it’s repeatedly used as a treatment for the average chilly, sore throat, or cough. The ginger is assumed to assist with maintaining the frame heat, the honey is assumed to appease the throat, and the Korean pear is claimed to assist with digestion. As The Salt has reported, there is no longer a lot science into the therapeutic houses of tea with honey, however medical doctors speculate that heat beverages could be comforting as a result of they loosen throat phlegm.

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Yuja-cha (유자차), or yuja tea, made with the yuja fruit, is particularly top in nutrition C. The tea pictured was once made with store-bought yuja marmalade.

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Yuja-cha (유자차), yuja tea:Yuja-cha is a tea made with yuja marmalade in scorching water. Yuja (유자) the fruit is most commonly cultivated in Asia, however the marmalade, known as yuja-cheong, will also be simply discovered at Korean grocery shops or on Amazon. Yuja fruit tastes a little like a hybrid between a lemon, an orange and grapefruit; yuja marmalade is each candy and sour. The tea is incessantly loved within the iciness, to heat you up, or if you find yourself ill with a chilly, as a result of it’s believed to be particularly top in nutrition C. My mom made her personal variation of the marmalade at house, substituting lemons for yuja, as a result of consistent with her, if it was once “recent” it had extra nutrition C. (In this level, mother was once mistaken: In line with Gavin, yuja has 2.thrice as a lot nutrition C because the identical quantity of uncooked lemon juice.)

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The writer’s mom prepares doraji (도라지), or bellflower root.In Korea, it is incessantly culturally related to cough reduction.

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Doraji (도라지), bellflower root: My mom used to feed me doraji root lower up into tiny cubes and drowned in honey. When uncooked, doraji has a surprisingly sour style and scents quite like ginseng. Many grocery and departments shops in Korea promote doraji paste in jars, and it is incessantly culturally related to cough reduction. Mother made me down a spoonful each day to struggle my serious bronchial asthma. (My mom may’ve been onto one thing right here: Analysis into the healing doable of bioactive isolates derived from bellflower root has been expanding.) In Korea, doraji is cooked in myriad tactics. It is believed to assist with keeping up a nutritious diet and incessantly utilized in natural medications. In case you like Korean bibimbap, you’ve gotten possibly eaten doraji – it is one of the crucial seasoned greens repeatedly used within the dish. (As soon as cooked and seasoned, it’s not sour.)

As a kid, I puzzled why my mom was once feeding me these kind of strange Korean dishes. However now, I see the real therapeutic houses she stirred into her Korean meals therapies: selfless love.


Jenna Cho’s Samgyetang Recipe

(courtesy of the writer’s mom)

Substances:

1 “younger rooster” (we use Cornish chicken)

1 cup glutinous rice, rinse and soak in water for a minimum of 1 hour!

Small piece of one ginseng root (recent most popular)

five small dried jujubes

five garlic cloves

2 peeled Korean chestnuts

Black pepper

Salt for dipping

Inexperienced onion, chopped (not obligatory)

(Be aware: Maximum Korean grocery shops promote a samgyetang dry equipment with jujubes, rice, chestnuts and dried ginseng — you simply want the rooster and garlic cloves.)

Instructions:

  1. Pressure glutinous rice that has been soaked for an hour. Put aside.
  2. Take away within (giblets) of younger rooster and wash the rooster, particularly the interior, totally.
  3. Stuff the rooster with ready rice, three jujubes, three garlic cloves, 2 peeled chestnuts and the piece of ginseng. The rooster might be smartly filled, however if in case you have rice left over, be at liberty so as to add it to the broth.
  4. As soon as rooster is filled, use picket toothpick to near the rooster close. (Stitch the toothpick via. You’ll be able to use a couple of toothpicks.)
  5. Position the ready, filled rooster in a pot. Upload 1 liter of water (till rooster is roofed) and throw in the rest jujubes and garlic cloves. Quilt and prepare dinner on medium warmth for 25 mins.
  6. Flip down the warmth and prepare dinner for an extra 20 mins. You’ll be able to take a look at to peer whether it is able through seeing how cooked the rice is — the rice must be comfortable.
  7. Take away the toothpick(s) from the rooster. Garnish with chopped inexperienced onion (not obligatory) and black pepper. Serve the soup with rooster in a bowl, with an aspect of salt to dip the rooster meat. Kimchi isn’t a nasty thought.

Eileen W. Cho is a Korean-American photographer and author primarily based in Paris, France.

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