Samgyetang is made by simmering a whole young chicken stuffed with ginseng, hedysarum root, jujubes and sweet rice. Considered an energy-boosting dish best eaten during Sambok (Chobok, Jungbok, and malbok), the hottest days of the lunar year, it is a classic Korean dish that has become popular among international diners as well
a must-eat dish in the summer samgyetang (ginseng chicken soup) is made by stuffing the cavity of a young chicken with sweet rice, ginseng, hedysarum root, and jujubes, trussing it and then simmering it in a stone pot or earthen bowl for about an hour. it became a popular dish once ginseng was made more widely available. the hot summer is the season for chicken. it is common in Korea for many restaurants which do not have samgyetang on their menu to offer it in the hot summer season, which demonstrates the tremendous popularity of this soup. samgyetang is well known to foreigners as well. Murakami ryu, a renowned Japanese author, praised samgyetang as the best Korean dish in his novel, while Zhang Yimou, a famous Chinese film director, said he enjoys it every time he visits Korea.
The mother-in-law’s samgyetang riding on the popularity of samgyetang, ‘fusion’ samgyetang using unorthodox ingredients has become a growing trend. the new ingredients start with deer antler chips, chestnuts, and pine nuts and even include whole abalones (with shell) or whole red ginseng roots. there is the ‘Medicinal samgyetang’ seasoned with oriental medicinal herbs, the ‘seafood samgyetang’ with baby octopus and blue crab, and the ‘Bamboo samgyetang’ that is served inside a hollow bamboo stalk. regardless, nothing can beat the classic mother-in-law’s homemade samgyetang. in the old days, it was customary for a mother to kill one of her back-yard hens and prepare samgyetang to welcome the son-in-law into her house. the mother-in-law’s samgyetang will always be special, because it was made with love and affection. samgyetang contains many healthy ingredients. garlic and ginseng are the two main side ingredients, and jujubes and pine nuts are frequently added as well. sometimes, ground peanuts or perilla seeds are added for flavor and body
“Ginseng” attempts to trace the english word “ginseng” to its origin have been divided between two arguments. one is that it was derived from the Japanese pronunciation for the name of the plant, the other claims from the Chinese. however, it is today widely accepted that the word originated from the scientific name of the plant , “panax ginseng,” registered with the World Botanical associates (WBa) by the russian botanist Carl anton von Meyer in 1843.