Lobok is a Chinese radish that forms large oval roots and is interchangeable in recipes that calls for Daikon radish. The Lobok has a flesh that is firm and crisp and its flavours range from sweet and mild to pungent. Lobok is also known as White Radish, and in Japan as Daikon or Daikon radish. A popular Asian veggie does not look like the small, round red radishes that we find in tossed green salads. Instead, Chinese white radish, or the “Raphanus sativus”, which is its scientific name, looks like a large white carrot. In Japan, chefs rely on LoBok or daikon radishes to add a bite and flavour to relishes and salads. In China it is used more in cooking. Chinese cooks add LoBok to soups, stir-fries and “red-cooked dishes”, where the food is slowly simmered in soy sauce. Turnip Cake made with LoBok or the Chinese white radish is a popular Chinese New Year dish. Lobok or daikon was traditionally pickled in the late fall to preserve vegetables for the winter. One of the most popular varieties of pickled LoBok is called “takuan” in Japanese and “danmuji” in Korean. Legend has it that a Buddhist monk called Takuan Soho used this radish to make the first pickle.
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