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A spicy sour soup, kimchi jiggae goes well with rice or can be eaten on its own

A spicy sour soup, kimchi jiggae goes well with rice or can be eaten on its own

This is where my love for korean dramas and food ties in well. Every time I watch one of my many korean dramas, there’s always a scene where someone’s eating and having a good time with all that delicious looking korean food. Kimchi fried pancakes, kimchi soup, bulgogi, Korean barbeque and the list is endless. After watching so much of it, I crave the food featured in the shows even if I’ve never tried it.

One of my favourite Korean dishes is Kimchi jiggae, a sort of soup or stew made with kimchi. Kimchi is essentially a fermented vegetable, most commonly made from napfa cabbage, and is loaded with vitamins as well as a healthy bacteria called lactobacilli which helps your digestion system. It has long been known to be a “health food” thus said.

Unfortunately I like the taste of it much more than I like the health benefits so I eat lots of this fermented cabbage. I throw it into kimchi stews and add meat to it and it comes out deliciously spicy and sour with plenty of umami.

Kimchi jiggae ingredients: Onions and garlic, tofu, pork slices, spring onions, enoki mushrooms, kimchi, tomatoes and milk

Kimchi jiggae ingredients: Onions and garlic, tofu, pork slices, spring onions, enoki mushrooms, kimchi, tomatoes and milk

Ingredients (Serves 3-4 pax)

  1. 400g of kimchi
  2. 1 packet of pressed tofu or you could substitute this with egg tofu, sliced into manageable pieces
  3. 1/2 a large green onion, diced
  4. 1 stalk spring onion, chopped
  5. 3-4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  6. A handful of enoki mushrooms, bottom chopped off and mushrooms cleaned
  7. 1 tomato, quartered
  8. A packet of your favorite slice of meat, could be that shabu shabu meat or chunks, whichever you prefer just make sure it is room temperature. I use sliced pork meant for shabu shabu.
  9. 1/2 cup of full cream milk
  10. 5-6 cups of chicken//beef stock or water (I use water, but to get a richer taste you could use stock), enough to cook the ingredients in
  11. Chilli padi if you like your stew spicy

Cooking Instructions

  1. Heat up a tablespoon of oil in a sauce pan to fry your garlic and onions
  2. Once your onions are slightly translucent, add the tomatoes and stir fry
  3. Add the kimchi, milk and stock/water to the pan and let this simmer for about 3-5 few minutes.
  4. Slowly add your meat to the pot, then your mushrooms. If you opted for a chilli padi then add to the pot here. Let this simmer for 3-5 minutes.
  5. Slide your tofu into the mix and let this cook for a couple of minutes more.
  6. Scatter spring onions over the top and serve in its pot. If you have a nice stone/earthenware pot you could use that instead to make it all the more pleasing to the eye.
  7. Eat with fluffy white rice or translucent rice noodles

You could add some noodles to this to make it a one pot meal or have it as a carb-less meal
You could add some noodles to this to make it a one pot meal or have it as a carb-less meal