Why Ramie-Leaf Rice Cakes Are a Popular Chuseok Treat

      September 21, 2021 08:21

      There would be no Chuseok, the biggest holiday of the year in Korea, without crescent-shaped rice cakes or songpyeon, and among the most prized is the variety from Yeonggwang, South Jeolla Province.

      In Gwangju and South Jeolla Province, they are traditionally made with ramie leaf, and now they are popular nationwide with annual sales surpassing W25 billion (US$1=W1,179). They are famous for their chewy and delectable texture.

      Ramie leaves have a unique aroma, but they also have a practical use because they prevent rice cakes from hardening or spoiling. The plant is also used to make clothes.

      They contain six times more anti-oxidants than mugwort and also lots of calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium, so the cakes are not only delicious but healthful as well as Koreans prepare for the long winter months.

      A cooperative of ramie-leaf songpyeon makers was formed in 2009 and now consists of around 80 producers.

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