Winter Solstice Red Bean Porridge(冬至红豆粥)

Winter Solstice Red Bean Porridge

Headword

동지팥죽 ( 冬至红豆粥 , Dongji Patjuk )

Location of the encyclopedia

Korean Seasonal Customs > Winter > 11th Lunar month > Seasonal Terms

Writer ChoHoojong(趙厚鍾)

Dongji Patjuk (Kor. 동지팥죽, lit. Dongji red bean porridge) is a seasonal dish consumed on Dongji (Kor. 동지, Chin. 冬至, Winter Solstice), also referred to as Little Lunar New Year. Red bean porridge on this day is used as a sacrificial food during ancestral memorial services. It is also sprinkled on the gate or exterior walls of the house in order to keep away evil or malicious spirits. Red bean porridge on Dongji is cooked with rice dough balls known as saealsim (Kor. 새알심, lit. bird egg balls). In some parts of Korea, family members are served as many saealsim as their age. This association with age is also observed in the old saying, “Without eating Dongji red bean porridge, one cannot turn a year older”.

As the day with the shortest daylight hours and longest night, Dongji is considered full of negative energy. In order to thwart the evil spirits of the day, one needs the positive energy that can be obtained from the red bean porridge. The dish’s red color has long been regarded as symbolizing positive energy and possessing the power to vanquish negative forces. Worshiping red originated in the past when people in many parts of the world believed in the magic power of this color. They considered red elements and substances such as the sun, fire and blood as symbols of vitality and authority. Since early times in Korea, the Winter Solstice was considered to be the day of the death and resurrection of the sun. Preparing and consuming red bean porridge on this day, therefore, is directly linked with the ancient worship of red. According to the tradition, families first offer a serving of red bean porridge to ancestors’ spirits, and then place bowls with the porridge in various parts of the house, including the rooms, barn, water well, and the platform for jars of fermented foods. Sometimes they sprinkle some porridge on the gate and outer walls of the house in the belief that this will keep evil spirits and misfortune at bay.

Winter Solstice Red Bean Porridge

Winter Solstice Red Bean Porridge
Headword

동지팥죽 ( 冬至红豆粥 , Dongji Patjuk )

Location of the encyclopedia

Korean Seasonal Customs > Winter > 11th Lunar month > Seasonal Terms

Writer ChoHoojong(趙厚鍾)

Dongji Patjuk (Kor. 동지팥죽, lit. Dongji red bean porridge) is a seasonal dish consumed on Dongji (Kor. 동지, Chin. 冬至, Winter Solstice), also referred to as Little Lunar New Year. Red bean porridge on this day is used as a sacrificial food during ancestral memorial services. It is also sprinkled on the gate or exterior walls of the house in order to keep away evil or malicious spirits. Red bean porridge on Dongji is cooked with rice dough balls known as saealsim (Kor. 새알심, lit. bird egg balls). In some parts of Korea, family members are served as many saealsim as their age. This association with age is also observed in the old saying, “Without eating Dongji red bean porridge, one cannot turn a year older”.

As the day with the shortest daylight hours and longest night, Dongji is considered full of negative energy. In order to thwart the evil spirits of the day, one needs the positive energy that can be obtained from the red bean porridge. The dish’s red color has long been regarded as symbolizing positive energy and possessing the power to vanquish negative forces. Worshiping red originated in the past when people in many parts of the world believed in the magic power of this color. They considered red elements and substances such as the sun, fire and blood as symbols of vitality and authority. Since early times in Korea, the Winter Solstice was considered to be the day of the death and resurrection of the sun. Preparing and consuming red bean porridge on this day, therefore, is directly linked with the ancient worship of red. According to the tradition, families first offer a serving of red bean porridge to ancestors’ spirits, and then place bowls with the porridge in various parts of the house, including the rooms, barn, water well, and the platform for jars of fermented foods. Sometimes they sprinkle some porridge on the gate and outer walls of the house in the belief that this will keep evil spirits and misfortune at bay.