Simmered Burdock Root (oo eong cho rim – 우엉조림)

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This is one of my favorite banchan, and it’s a flavor that you will find in many places across the Korean cuisine. It’s a little sweet, a little salty, and a little nutty. This vegetable is not normally seen on your average American dining room table, but it is healthy and tasty. The root is often used in various natural medicines as well. Cutting the root into fine pieces is the hardest part and can get a bit time consuming, but after that it’s just watching the pit simmer and stirring once in a while.

  • Prep Time: 30-40 minutes
  • Cooking Time:  30-40 minutes
  • Total Time: ~60-80 minutes
  • 1.5 pounds of burdock root – about 3 long roots (oo eong – 우엉)
  • 1/2 cup water (mul – 물)
  • 2 tsp cooking vinegar (shik cho – 식초)
  • 8 Tbsp Soy Sauce (gan jang – 간장)
  • 5 Tbsp Korean cooking wine (mat sul – 맛술)
  • 5 Tbsp Simple Sugar or oligosaccharide (o li go dang – 올리고당)
  • 2 Tbsp of granulated sugar (seol tang – 설탕)
  • 1 Tbsp of Sesame oil (cham ki ruem –  참기름)
  • 1 Tbsp of Sesame Seed Salt (ggae so geum – 깨소금)
For more information about ingredients please see my ingredient page for detailed information
  • Long-term Banchan
  • Sweet & Savory
  • Not Hot-At-All
  • Exotic Ingredients
  • Vegetarian
  1. When you buy the root it should look something like this. Rough and like a giant carrot. It will probably be wrapped in the store, and the inside should be a little moist when you cut it.
  2. Cut the root into pieces roughly 6-10 inches long.
  3. Using a hand peeler, take the skin off each piece. It should come off rather easily.
  4. They will look a bit like this when you are finished
  5. Take the pieces and cut them into smaller segments about 3 inches long.
  6. The cut the pieces in half.
  7. Take each half and cut them in half again. Sometime they are a bit hard to deal with at this stage. But the skinnier you can cut them, the more flavorful they will be.
  8. Take the individual pieces and cut them into small skinny strips like this. I find that it is easier to do this A. With another person helping so it doesn’t take so long and B. in an assembly line type method: cut them all in half, then all in half again, then all into strips. 
  9. Meanwhile, have a large bowl that you fill with a bit of water and put the amount of vinegar in. I would put them in the water to soak as soon as you get them cut. They should soak for about 10 minutes after the last one is in there. The root has a tendency to be a bit tart and the vinegar bath reduces this a bit.
  10. After soaking, rinse all the vinegar water off the pieces.
  11. At this point you can make your marinade in a separate bowl using the sugar, simple sugar, cooking wine, and soy sauce. Remember the sesame oil always comes last so don’t put it in now. 
  12. Put some oil in your frying pan. It needs to be a frying device that has a lid. 
  13. Put the cut burdock root in and fry for about 5 minutes in a medium heat.
  14. Add the half cup of water
  15. And the marinade.
  16. Cover and let it simmer, just barely steaming, with the lid on for about 30 minutes. Stirring every few minutes.
  17. At this point you want to check it. Depending on your heat you may have to adjust a few factors. You may have to add a bit of water if it starts to run out before the 30 minutes is up. After 30 minutes, if there is some liquid still on the bottom, open the lid and continue to stir and simmer until the water is gone. The root really takes on the flavor at the end, as the last of the marinade is being soaked into the root, so be sure to keep stirring at this point.
  18. Not, when it is finished, turn off the heat and add the sesame seeds and sesame oil. 
  19. Try it out. It should be a tad bit crunchy but at the same time kind of soft. It will get a bit softer the longer you keep it in the fridge don’t worry. 
  20. Store in a good sealed container, and enjoy with rice! 

Do you have comments? Suggestions? Questions? Leave them below and I will answer right away!~