Thursday, 12 February 2009

K-popped! Kitchen: What to do with Gochujang

Ah, it has been too long since I did a cooking post. Well, I just haven't been cooking much lately with the holiday season in the air. But now that's over, it's back to the stove.

Gochujang - the sweet and spicy bean paste that flavour many of our favourite Korean dishes. Unless we're Korean, not many of us will use it everyday. I find myself reluctantly having to throw out that tub of moldy bean paste I had cast to the recesses of my refrigerator because I just did not know what else to do with it. And then, I stopped buying it altogether.

But cheeky little Gochujang always winks at me when I pass the sauce section at the supermarket, and I'm compelled to take it home with me once again. Darn you, Gochujang!

So what can I do with Gochujang? Here are a few things I've tried.

Firstly, let's store this sweet and spicy goodness so that it doesn't turn moldy and alive in the back of your fridge. Fill ice cube trays with gochujang and freeze it until your next use. Just pop a cube of gochujang the next time you have a taste for something Korean!

Gochujang out of the freezer with frost crystals on it, not mold.

Gochujang Dressing
Give your salad that Asian zing with gochujang!

In a mortar and pestle or food processor combine:
  • 1tsp soy sauce
  • 2 1/2tbsp sesame oil (or any other oil like olive or grape seed oil)
  • 1tsp apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1tbsp plain yoghurt
  • 1tbsp gochujang
*Always taste your dressing and adjust amounts as you go. What I like to put in it may not necessarily be what you like. ;)

Toss the gochujang dressing in your favourite mix of greens and sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds or nuts to finish. I think avocados go well with this dressing because of its rich texture. Mangos would probably do nicely too.

Gochujang in your everyday dishes
Malaysians love to put sambal in their cooking to spice things up. Next time why not try gochujang instead of sambal or chili sauce.

Braised tofu and eggplant in gochujang, soy and oyster sauce.

Noodle Salad with gochujang
I do this when I'm really lazy. Which is... very often. ;p

Chop up your favourite greens and condiments (eg. cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, salad greens, leftover roast chicken, etc.), add a dollop of ghochujang in the middle and...

... toss piping hot pasta or noodles of any kind (penne, spaghetti, soba, egg noodles) with ingredients for an instant meal!

Everyday Bibimbap
Or you can do what Orchid does and have her gochujang everyday with her everyday bibimbap.

Share with us your tips on what to do with gochujang in your everyday meals! We'd love to know.

Click here to see what else is cooking in K-popped's Kitchen!


nanienooraini said...

baby carrots + gochujang makes healthy & delish snack - yummmm!

Anonymous said...

wer cn u get gochujang sauce in KL?

Anonymous said...

marinate chicken drumlets with potato and carrots and chopped onions. toss in the fridge for as long as you can resist eating, and then cook! uber yum.

Sophia said...

oh snap, I never thought of freezing my gochujang. I brought a huge tube and it's been in my fridge for a while.

Do I have to put it in ice cube try or can I just put the whole tub in there?

Rooster said...

Anonymous 1: You can get gochujang at Korean marts such as Lotte which will be opening in 1U soon.

Anonymous 2: Oh, that sounds yummy! Will have to try that. :)

Sophia: It's a little difficult squeezing a tube of frozen gochujang, no? Putting them in ice-cube trays just makes it easier to get what you need, but you don't have to.

daisyjane said...

I have a tub of Gochujang in my fridge...I use it off and on. I wonder how long it keeps though...

Rooster said...

@ daisyjane: Yea, I'm not really sure either. But I think they differ between brands and the amount of additives they contain.

One I bought turned into a fungus farm within a week. Another seem to have lasted months and still looked fine, but I threw it out because God knows what was brewing in there. lol

Sophia said...

@Rooster: The brand I have is Chungjungwon. I only used it whenever I'm in the mood for Bimibap.


Rooster said...

Thanks Sophia. Will check it out. ;)

Micah said...

does gochujang get freezer burned? do you cover it with plastic wrap or something? XD


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