Kimchi Jjigae – Pork and Kimchi Stew

A big bowl of Chinese hot and sour soup has always done me well when I’m suffering from a cold and have all but lost my sense of taste. So as I’ve been fighting a bad one this week, a hot and spicy Korean soup recipe was calling my name. Kimchi jjigae is a stew made mainly of kimchi, so it’s also a good way to use up some of that homemade kimchi that’s still in my fridge. Here’s a basic recipe that I compiled after looking at about 5 variations and considering my own tastes and available ingredients.

Kimchi Jjigae
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1/2 lb. pork
2 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
3 cups kimchi, chopped with liquid
12 oz. firm tofu, cubed
2 tsp. fish sauce
4 shiitakes, fresh or dried and reconstituted, sliced
4 green onions, sliced thinly

saute pork

First, saute pork and garlic in the sesame oil, until garlic is aromatic and pork is starting to brown.

kimchi added

Next, add kimchi with it’s own liquid and about 3-4 more cups of water, enough to cover the pork. Simmer for about 10 minutes.

mushrooms etc

Add mushrooms, tofu, green onions, and fish sauce. Stir well and simmer for another 10 minutes.

finished jjigae

Now you have a hot and spicy stew. Vegetarians could easily leave out the pork and still have a great bowl of soup. It’s very simple because all of the flavor comes from the kimchi, so I can see why it is a favorite Korean dish. Definitely a tasty dish to help clear out my sinuses and warm me up on this cold winter week!

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2 responses to “Kimchi Jjigae – Pork and Kimchi Stew

  1. What cut of pork did you use? Tenderloin? Pork chops? Thanks!

    • I used tenderloin, but I don’t think it matters. Some of the recipes call for pork belly even – but I preferred the leaner cut. Since it simmers awhile it was plenty tender without the extra fat, just don’t overdo it on the initial browning.

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