[Korean Food Diaries] – Doenjang-jjigae (Soybean Paste Soup)

I’ve recently been missing my mom’s home cooking so I decided to explore cooking my own traditional korean dishes that my mom used to make when I was younger. For my first Korean dish, I chose to make one of Korea’s popular comfort foods – the Soybean Paste Soup or Doenjang-jjigae.

The recipe itself is very simple with 20 min of prep time and 30 min to cook.

You’ll need the follow ingredients (serving size 1 person):

  • 1 zucchini (diced)
  • 1/2 a potato (diced)
  • 1/3 onion (cubed)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • 1 green chili pepper (chopped)
  • 1 stalk of green onion (chopped)
  • 1/3 carton of tofu (cubed)
  • 2 tbs of soybean paste
  • Optional: You can add beef or shrimp if you’d like

There are many different korean soybean pastes you can buy at your standard Asian market, but my mom raved about this specific soybean paste so I had to buy it.

Korean Food - Soybean Paste

Korean soups are traditionally cooked in clay earthenware bowls as pictured below. They’re not very expensive (~$4 each) but do a great job of cooking and keep your soup warm.

Korean Food - Soybean Paste

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Prepare your clay bowl or regular stove pot with the following ingredients: zucchini, potato, onion, garlic, green chili pepper.
  2. Add about 2 1/2 cups of water, enough to cover the ingredients, and boil the water at medium heat.
  3. After about 10-15 min when the water starts to boil, take a strainer and mix in your 2 tbs of soybean paste to create a broth (stir the soup occasionally)
  4. After 5 min, add in your tofu.
  5. Garnish the finished soup with green onions and serve with a bowl of rice and other side dishes.

Korean Food - Soy Bean Paste

Photos via JC


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