The Korea Herald


Oi sobagi (stuffed cucumber kimchi)

By Korea Herald

Published : July 26, 2013 - 20:23

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Oi sobagi (stuffed cucumber kimchi) (Korean Bapsang) Oi sobagi (stuffed cucumber kimchi) (Korean Bapsang)
Oi sobagi is stuffed cucumber kimchi. It is best made in the summer time when cucumbers are in season. Always look for cucumbers that are firm and slender. For the kimchi, the cucumbers are first salted in boiling hot salted water before being stuffed with the filling. Don’t worry, the hot water won’t cook the cucumbers. This is the method traditionally used for Korean pickled cucumbers, called oiji, to keep the cucumbers crisp and crunchy for a long time. Hope you get a chance to make this quick and refreshing summer kimchi before the summer is over.


● 5 Korean cucumbers (10 kirby/pickling cucumbers)

● Salting water:

● 6 cups water

● 6 tablespoons coarse sea salt


● 110 grams Korean garlic chives (buchu)

● 80 grams Korean radish (mu) or carrots

● 5 tablespoons Korean red chili pepper flakes (gochugaru)

● 1 tablespoon salted shrimp (saeujeot)

● 1 tablespoon fish sauce

● 1 tablespoon minced garlic

● 1 teaspoon finely grated ginger

To clean, rub each cucumber with a little bit of salt and rinse. If using long Korean cucumbers, cut in half crosswise.

Add 6 cups of water with 6 tablespoons of salt in a medium-size pot. Bring it to a rapid boil. Turn the heat off. Pour the boiling water over the cucumbers in a bowl. Keep the cucumbers submerged by weighing them down with a bowl or plate. Let it sit for about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, cut the chives into about 1 centimeter lengths. Julienne the radish, and then cut into the same lengths.

Combine all the stuffing ingredients and mix well. It should taste a bit salty.

Drain the cucumbers. Holding the top end of the cucumber on the cutting board, run a small knife through the middle lengthwise. Leave about 1.5 centimeters uncut at both ends. Turn the cucumber and make another cut through the middle lengthwise to make a cross cut, again leaving about 1.5 centimeters uncut at both ends. Repeat with all the cucumbers.

Gently open each slit and insert about a teaspoonful or two of the stuffing. Be sure to fill all four slits of each cucumber. Repeat until all the cucumbers are stuffed. Place them in a jar or an airtight container. Leave it out at room temperature for half a day or so. Then, store in the fridge.

This cucumber kimchi can be eaten right away and will keep well for a few days. This is a quick kimchi not intended for weeks of storage.

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By Ro Hyo-sun