Sikhye 식혜

29 Mar

Sikhye (also spelled shikhye or shikeh; also occasionally termed dansul or gamju) is atraditional sweet Korean rice beverage, usually served as a dessert . In addition to itsliquid ingredients, sikhye also contains grains of cooked rice, and in some cases pine nuts.


Sikhye is made by pouring malt water onto cooked rice. The malt water steeps in the rice at typically 150 degrees Fahrenheit until grains of rice appear on the surface. The liquid is then carefully poured out, leaving the rougher parts, and boiled with sugar. In South Korea and in Korean grocery stores wherever Korean communities are found, sikhye is readily available in cans or plastic bottles. One of the largest South Korean producers of sikhye is the Vilac company of Busan. Atypical of most canned beverages, each can has a residue of cooked rice at the bottom. Homemade sikhye is often served after a meal in a Korean restaurant.





Regional Variations

There are several regional variations of sikhye. These include Andong sikhye and yeonyeop sikhye or yeonyeopju, a variety of sikhye made in Gangwon province. Andong sikhye differs in that it also includes radishes, carrots, and powdered red pepper. Also, it is fermented for several days as opposed to being boiled.It is important to note that the crunchy texture of the radish is kept despite the longer fermentation process, since a soft texture would indicate an inferior product. Whereas the sweet canned or restaurant sikhye is enjoyed as a dessert beverage, Andong sikhye is appreciated as a digestive aid, containing lactobacillus.



yeonyeop sikhye

yeonyeop sikhye

Andong sikhye

Andong sikhye


Sikhye has lots of effects. The first well-known effect is accelating function of digesion. Sikhye is one of the fermented foodswhich can help a viscus’s movement and this working accelates a digesion. Moreover,Sikhye contains abundant fibers more than other fiber beverages or foods. These ferment, especially fibers, work in body to accelate a digestion as the main element. Furthermore, these fibers contained abundantly in Sikhye are helpful for chronic constipation and prevention of colorectal cancer.

According to Sasang typology(사상의학;四象醫學) in Oriental culture, Sikhye helps people who have cold constitution to be warmer and also helps those who have too warm constitution to be less warm. It is very helpful for relieving hangover. In addition, by drinking Sikhye, people can supplement sugar and “electrolyte” more efficiently.

Above these many effects, Sikhye is good for prevention of  “arteriosclerosis” and relieveing “mammalgia”

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Posted by on March 29, 2012 in Sikhye 식혜


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