When I was working for Michelin-starred restaurants in New York City, I used to slice and deep fry lotus roots to be used as garnishes. Whenever I made these I couldn’t stop thinking about the salty and sweet soy sauce braised lotus root banchan in Korea.
The lotus is a lovely plant, and in Korea every single part of it has a purpose.
Ueong (우엉, pronounced ooh-ung) is known as burdock root in English, and can be found in temperate zones around the world.
This is the most common way to prepare ueong (우엉, burdock root) in Korea.
Of all the vegetables in the traditional Korean diet, godeulbbaegi (고들빼기, Crepidiastrum sonchifolium) is the most intensely bitter.
Godeulbbaegi’s bitterness is tempered when blanched and dressed with doenjang.
This version of deodeok gui is based on my mom’s recipe.
Doraji namul (도라지나물, sautéed balloon flower root) can be slightly sweet, and have ever so slight of a sharp, bitter aftertaste.
There’s an old song in Korean about doraji (도라지, bellflower root).