[sagol: bone marrow or beef bones, jjigae: stew]
Kimchi-jjigae (김치찌개) is one of those soups that can be made with anything from bacon, canned tuna and myulchi broth. Today I will show you how I made kimchi-jjigae with sagol-guk (사골국), a bone marrow broth I made a few days ago. My family and I had a fabulously rich French cuisine for lunch to celebrate my husband’s first vacation in a year. It was a wonderful experience but afterwards, all I wanted to eat was kimchi–jjigae for dinner, a very typical Korean response. This kimchi–jjigae was actually one of the easiest stews I’ve made in a long time. All I had to do was to take out the sagol-guk from the freezer and defrost, sauté some kimchi and cook it with some vegetables and tofu. The total prep time took less than 10 minutes and I was able walk away when the jjigae was stewing for about 20-30 minutes. The best part was that it was one of the most delicious kimchi-jjigaes I’ve ever made.
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
- 1 cup of kimchi (김치), cut into bite size pieces
- 1/2 onion, cut into thin slices
- 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
- 1 1/2 – 2 cups of sagol-guk (사골국, bone marrow broth)
- About 5 tablespoons of kimchi juice
- 1/2 package of soft tofu, cut into cubes
- About 7 flat ttucks (떡, rice cakes) – optional
- 1/2 – 1 tablespoon of gukganjang (국간장, Korean soy sauce) or soy sauce
- Gochugaru (고추가루, Korean red pepper powder) – optional
- 1 scallion, cut into thin diagonal slices
- Heat a tablespoon of sesame oil in a small pot or medium size ttuckbaegi (뚝배기, Korean earthenware pot) on medium heat. Sauté the kimchi, onion and garlic for about 5 minutes they are until tender.
- Pour in sagol–guk (사골국) and kimchi juice. Increase the heat to high and bring it to a boil then lower it to a simmer. Cook for at least 20 minutes.
- Increase the heat once more and add the tofu and scallions. Stew for another 5 minutes.
- Taste the kimchi-jjigae and season with gukganjang (국간장, Korean soy sauce) or regular soy sauce. You can add a little gochugaru (고추가루, Korean red pepper powder) to make it extra spicy.
- Always use aged kimchi for kimchi-jjigae. Kimchi becomes sour as it ages and this is the best kind to make kimchi-jjigae. If you can get a hold of mooguenji (묵은지), which is an well-aged kimchi made specifically to be eaten after an aging process, use it instead of regular kimchi.
- If your kimchi is very sour, you may want to add a little sugar to balance the sourness although I generally do not use sugar in mine. You may want to add more onions instead because the onion sweetens the kimchi-jjigae as it cooks.
- You can also add ttuck (떡, rice cakes) or even mandoo (만두, dumplings) in the kimchi-jjigae towards the end of the cooking process.