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Type Hoe
Place of origin Korea
Associated national cuisine Korean cuisine
Main ingredients Long arm octopus
Cookbook: San-nakji  Media: San-nakji
Korean name
Hangul 산낙지
Hanja n/a
Revised Romanization san-nakji
McCune–Reischauer san-nakchi
IPA [san.nak̚.t͈ɕi]

San-nakji (산낙지) is a variety of hoe (raw dish) made with long arm octopus.[1] Although the octopuses are killed before cut into small pieces and served, the nerve activity in the octopus' tentacles makes the pieces still squirming posthumously on the plate when served.[2][3][4] The dish is sprinkled with sesame oil and toasted sesame seeds.[5]


Because the suction cups on the arm pieces are still active when the dish is served, special care should be taken when eating sannakji. The active suction cups can cause swallowed pieces of arm to stick to the mouth or throat.[6] This can also present a choking hazard for some people, particularly if they are intoxicated.

Language difference[edit]

Vocabularies in the two Koreas differ on nakji: South Koreans call a small kind of octopus nakji, while North Koreans call a squid nakji (nakchi in McCune–Reischauer romanization).


Sannakji is served in Korean restaurants that serve sliced raw fish, but it also can be found at bars as a snack to accompany alcoholic beverages, such as soju.


Several incidents of choking on Sannakji have been reported, such as a 2008 incident in Gwangju.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "san-nakji" 산낙지. Standard Korean Language Dictionary (in Korean). National Institute of Korean Language. Retrieved 22 February 2017. 
  2. ^ Rosen, Daniel Edward (4 May 2010). "Korean restaurant's live Octopus dish has animal rights activists squirming". New York Daily News. Retrieved 3 June 2017. 
  3. ^ Han, Jane (14 May 2010). "Clash of culture? Sannakji angers US animal activists". The Korea Times. Retrieved 4 June 2017. 
  4. ^ Compton, Natalie B. (17 June 2016). "Eating a Live Octopus Wasn't Nearly as Difficult As It Sounds". Munchies. VICE. Retrieved 4 June 2017. 
  5. ^ Warwick, Joe (30 January 2015). "The truth about Noma's live prawn dish". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 June 2017. 
  6. ^ "Eight controversial foods from around the world". The Times of India. 
  7. ^ Yonhap News 2008-01-21 광주서 산낙지 먹다 기도막힌 사고 잇따라

External links[edit]