Probably one of my favorite Korean side dishes is a sweet and sour radish salad called moosangchae. This dish has a slight bit of spice to it, but nothing that is too strong. Even those that are sensitive to heat, can eat this.
It is very simple to make and will probably become a quick family favorite. Korean radishes, also known as moo, can have that same spicy bite to it of our little salad radishes if eaten raw but tend to be milder. In the salad, that spiciness seems to disappear and becomes a very mellow vegetable with the best crunch to it. The radishes are not the little red ones we are used to or daikon (but these would probably be a close substitute) but a very large radish found in all Korean grocery stores. They usually weigh about 2 lbs and up. (that is me holding one, so you can see the size. They are huge and that is a medium sized one!)
This radish is a large staple in Korea, used in soups, kimchi, and side dishes. Probably one of my favorite Asian veggies!! Now to learn how to turn this radish into one of my favorite dishes. One other vegetable that is used in this dish for flavor and color is shisito pepper. This is an asian sweet hot pepper. This does not taste similar to our sweet peppers, but has the flavor of a hot pepper without the kick. If you cannot find these (I was glad to see our local Costco supplying them after my harvest failed!) green onion is an acceptable substitute.
Radish Salad 무생채 Moosangchae
- 2 Lbs radish
- 1 carrot
- 6 shishito pepper or 1/2 bunch of green onion
- 1/2 Tbsp Sesame seeds
- 1 tsp Fish sauce
- 1 Tbsp Garlic paste
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
First wash and peel the radish. After this I like to grate it, but my husband will slice it paper thin and Juliane it. Basically you need to end up with matchsticks of radish. I use the largest holes on my mandolin to achieve the same results my husband achieves (but I save time)
Next wash, peel and julienne the carrot. The mandolin can also be used for this step, but lay the carrot down and slide it so you are getting pieces about the same length as the shredded radish. Next slice the shisito peppers into thin slices or chop us the onion. Add all the vegetable together.
Mix the final ingredients into the salad. We use our hands to mix (with gloves on of course!). Once well incorporated, it is ready to eat. This is a wonderful side dish with Bulgogi, or Sang gyup Sal (recipes coming soon!!)
Hope you enjoy it! If so leave a comment!