Falcone's Crossroads

Where This Meets That

Ginseng Root and Jujubes . . . So Much for Samgyetang!

My wife’s been longing for more variety in our diet. I don’t need much variety; when I have a good thing going, I like to keep it going, but I can sympathize.  And since cooking is something I love doing, I enjoy trying out new dishes and feel fairly confident in my ability to turn them out well.

Sometimes, though, I run smack into a culinary wall.

When I was in Korea, I had Samgyetang (Ginseng Chicken, i.e., Korean Chicken Soup), and I loved it!  It might have been the single best dish I had while in Asia.  It’s basically a whole cornish hen stuffed with sticky rice, garlic cloves, ginseng root, and jujubes then boiled and topped with green onions.

Sounds simple, right?  Yeah, not so much.

I looked all over east metro Atlanta for ginseng root and jujubes. I finally cornered a knowledgeable employee at Gwinnett International Farmer’s Market and asked him to point me toward ginseng root.  He looked puzzled, as I’d become used to, so I explained what I was trying to make, and his proverbial light bulb went off – or, on, as it were.

I followed him at a quick pace to an aisle full of dried fruits and roots that I’d already looked over. He reached up to the top shelf and pulled down, to my surprise, a Samgyetang kit!  The kit included sweet rice, chestnuts, jujubes, and a ginseng root.  All that was left to do was stuff it, boil it, and chow it down.

I finally prepared it for dinner last night and was terribly disappointed.  It just wasn’t the same as it was in Daegu where, presumably, the key ingredient of generational expertise grows in abundance.

As for dinner tonight? It’s all-American burgers and dogs, and the kids are thrilled!

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2 comments on “Ginseng Root and Jujubes . . . So Much for Samgyetang!

  1. pouringmyartout
    March 14, 2012

    The home version is never quite as good. But it still sounds tasty to me.

  2. Pingback: Friday Five – Random Asia Pictures | Falcone's Crossroads

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This entry was posted on March 14, 2012 by in Food & Drink and tagged , , , , , , , , , .
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