Recipe: Zen’s Kimchi Jjigae
Summary: After tasting other people’s Kimchi Jjigaes and introducing some of my more western preferences, here’s my latest recipe for Kimchi Jjigae. Like my chili recipe, it’s constantly evolving.
- 1/2 lbs. Bacon or Samgyeopsal (fresh pork belly), thick sliced, salted or unsalted
- 1 Onion, sliced
- 1 Tbsp. Ginger, minced
- Handful of Garlic Cloves, smashed and whole
- 1/2 lbs. Kimchi, preferrably old
- 2 Tsp. Sugar
- Salt to taste (depending if you have salted or unsalted bacon)
- Fresh cracked Black Pepper, lots of it
- Rice Vinegar (optional)
- 1/2 bottle of Soju (Korean traditional liquor)
- Brown the Bacon in a hot wok. When it is brown, move it to the side.
- Brown the Onions in the bacon grease.
- Add the Ginger, Kimchi, and Garlic. Stir fry for a while.
- Fill the wok with water until it’s covered the ingredients. Boil for five minutes. You will end up with a rich red broth.
- Add the Sugar and Black Pepper and taste. Adjust the Sugar, Vinegar and Salt until a nice balance of salty, sweet, and sour is achieved. The Kimchi should give it enough sourness, but vinegar should be at the ready just in case.
- Throw in 1/2 bottle of Soju to give it that extra kick. Drink the rest with due caution.
- Let it boil for a few more minutes. Serve it hot or boiling (if possible) with steamed rice to balance the strong flavor of the stew.
You can also substitute a can of tuna for the pork. Not only is it healthy, it’s a surprisingly good tasting alternative. Something magical happens with Chamchi (Tuna) Kimchi Jjigae. It’s sweeter and has good depth.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 20 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 4
Culinary tradition: Korean
Microformatting by hRecipe.
Mixing western “fond/deglace” techniques with Korean cooking…awesome!
just a side note -> not everyone uses soju (korean rice liquor) in this dish….
Oh, no, no, no. Soju is just my thang. I don’t know anyone else who does it.
I made a bowl last night and did a little classical French thing of adding a little butter at the very end. Smoothed it out a lot.
Oh…this is one of my favorite Korean dishes. I’ve lost 2 hours on your blog today, possibly more. I’ve lived in Mexico for 4 years and can’t find Korean food or ingredients, and it’s an almost fatal pining at this point.
And I’m in Korea pining for Mexican food.
Okay, time to tag and switch.
Don’t tease me, I’ll do it…international expatriate foreign exchange, I think we’re on to something.
Try adding a bit of tomato paste, just 1 or 2 Tbsp for the whole pot. It does something amazing to the flavour — got this from a restaurant we tried in L.A.
I also use bacons in my Kimchi Jjigae. But 1/2 bottle of soju?? lol I really like that idea.
I like your recipe! Interesting idea to put soju in it ^-^