Friday, March 11, 2011

Deonjang paste -- for Deonjang Jjigae salty spicy goodness

Doenjang jjigae is a popular Korean dish made with fermented Korean soybean paste, doenjang. It’s a great dish to take all the nutrients of doenjang. Because it’s one of the most common and popular dishes in Korea, you will probably find it in almost all Korean restaurants.
But if you’d like to try this at home, don’t hesitate. It’s very simple to make it, and it doesn’t take a lot of time.*
* Obviously, you need doenjang - Korean soybean bean paste to cook this at home. Home made doenjang has the best savor and nutrients, but it’s complicated to make it at home. You can buy doenjang in most korean grocery stores.
Some of popular ones are:

Here is a recipe to make doenjang jjigae.
1 and 1/2 tablespoons of doenjang
1/4 tofu from a package or 4~5oz (about 100 ~ 150g)
1 small or medium size onion
1/2 medium size zucchini or squash
5~7 dried anchovies
1 green onion
2 cloves of garlic (minced)
1 green chili pepper (optional)
1 red chili pepper (optional)
1/4 tablespoon Korean hot red pepper powder (gochugaru) or red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 cup of mushrooms (optional)
1/2 small or medium size potato (optional)
3 ~ 4 pieces of dasima(kelp) (optional)
1/2 tablespoon gochujang (optional, when you want to make it spicier)
Shrimps or clams (optional, when you want to make seafood doenjang jjigae)
* The amount of each ingredient is subject to personal taste.
1. Mix doenjang (and gochujang, if you want) with water.

2. Pour 1 to the stew pot and add 3 cups of water. (Depending on how salty and thick you want it to be, you can add less or more water.)
3. Remove the heads and intestines from the dry anchovies and put them in the pot.
4. If you have dasima, add it to the pot.
(*The anchovies and dasima are for broth. Most Koreans remove them a few minutes after the water boils.)

5. Slice the vegetables (onion, zucchini, potato or mushrooms).
6. When the water boils, add the chopped vegetables. Add the shrimps or clams if they are not cooked. If they are already cooked, you can add them with the tofu later.

7. Cut the tofu into chunks and chop the green onion.
8. When the vegetables are cooked, add the tofu and green onion.
9. When the jjigae boils, add the minced garlic, chopped green and red chili pepper. Add gochugaru (Korean hot red pepper powder) if you want to make it spicier. Boil it a couple of minutes more.
10. Serve the doenjang jjigae when it’s hot.

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