Sunday, April 13, 2014

World Beverages: Baesuk

Baesuk is a traditional Korean beverage that is perfect almost anytime, but especially when you are feeling unwell.  I made some when I was sick recently and the soothing honey, crisp fruit, and spicy zing of pepper and ginger were just what I needed to get through a tough day.

4 cups water
2 3' pieces of ginger
1 Asian pear (Bae)
36 whole peppercorns
2 1/2 tablespoons of honey
Pinenuts for garnish

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil.
Peel the ginger and cut into medium pieces.
Add the ginger to the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes.
Peel the pear and cut into 12 slices.
Place the pear slices in cold water to reduce browning.
Using a toothpick, make 3 small holes in the outer side of each pear slice.
Add peppercorns to the holes.
Remove the pear slices from the cold water and place in the boiling water.
Reduce to low heat and cook uncovered for 3-5 minutes.
Add honey, stirring gently.
Remove from heat and remove ginger.
Allow to cool.
Serve with a generous portion of liquid, 3-4 pear slices, and 3-4 pinenuts for garnish.


  • Reduce or increase your ingredients to taste.  I tend to prefer a lighter ginger flavor, so I might prepare this with half the ginger for myself.  
  • Baesuk can be served hot or cold.  Try it both ways to decide which version you enjoy most.
  • Placement of the peppercorns is optional.  I have seen them placed in different patterns on different surface areas.
  • I will try overnight refrigeration for part of the batch next time, to see if the pear slices will become too mushy.

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