Hanbang Herbs in Korean Cuisine
Posted 03 October 2010 - 08:23 PM
Some years back, I watched a late night Korean food and entertainment program (from MBC) on the local food channel which featured the dish, 'Dak Doritang' and the chef included siberian ginseng, milk vetch and a bark like herb into the chicken broth. I never managed to figure what the herb was since the English subtitles referred to it as birch bark which is not a herb. Managed to track down the VOD but can't access it,
Nonetheless I had the opportunity to view the following program available from a Hong Kong cable channel TVB8, which I think featured the same bark like herb I am looking for.
리얼미식기행 the Chef
The VOD has been taken off now but it's available for free for those located in the US & Canada (which excludes me) at
I can't remember which episode, it may be either the 3 episodes on the Jiri Mountain or on the Midland National Highway. Nonetheless, in one of these episodes where the 3 chefs went to the mountains, they had free range chicken soup which was cooked with that hanbang herb I am looking for. Based on the substitles (which are often not accurate) I think it's either the bark of the Alder tree or bark of the Omija tree.
I seek the assistance of korean speaking members on the forum to confirm this. My thanks and appreciation in advance.
Posted 07 October 2010 - 09:34 AM
Birch can be used as an herb (It might be considered a spice if dried, but lets not quibble). Sweet birch Betula lenta is/was used as a source of wintergreen oil in North America. There are likely Asian counterparts. If you've heard of birch beer - that's what it's flavored with (a type of root beer really).
If I could see the herb, maybe I could ID it. I'm a botanist and foodie.