Black Bean Noodles (짜장면, Jjajang-Myeon)
I love jjajangmyeon. It is a very popular take-out dish in Korea, and if you ever watch a Korean drama, there will be at least 1 scene where they order jjajangmyeon! The sauce is made with black bean paste, onions, vegetables, and some kind of meat, typically pork, beef, or mixed seafood. The recipe listed below is for pork jjajangmyeon, but feel free to substitute it with any meat you’d like, or even go vegetarian! Oh, and when you start eating, don’t forget to wear a dark shirt, because it’s inevitable that you will get black bean sauce on your clothes!
🇰🇷 Some ingredients may need to be bought at a Korean grocery or online.
👨👩👧👦 Serves 4 people
🍆 Vegetarian friendly, just omit the meat!
👍🏻 Very easy and great for beginners!
What you'll need:
¼ cup Black bean paste (see image below for which one I use)
1 cup Korean radish cubed into small pieces (see image below for what I use to cube veggies)
1 cup potato cubed into small pieces
1 medium sized onion diced
1 cup of zucchini
2 cups of broth or water (I used chicken broth for this recipe)
1 tablespoon of sugar
2 tablespoons of potato starch (or corn starch) mixed in 2 tablespoons of water
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
½ lb of pork (I used 1 pork chop)
1 teaspoon rice wine
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
½ Kirby cucumber, julienned for garnish
1 Pack Jjajangmyeon noodles (sold at the Korean grocery store in the refrigerated section, see image below)
Prepare the pork:
Cut the pork into small bite sized pieces. Mix in the garlic, mirin, soy sauce, and black pepper. Set aside.
Prepare the vegetables:
Cut the radish, potato, onion, and zucchini into small cubes.
Prepare the sauce:
Place 1-2 tablespoons of cooking oil in the wok. Place the black bean sauce in the middle and fry on med-high heat. The sauce will start to loosen, and have a more darker color to it. This will take about 1-2 minutes. This step is done to get rid of the bitter taste that black bean sauce tends to have. Spoon out of the wok, set aside.
Put 1 tablespoon of oil in the wok. Sautee the pork for about 5 minutes on medium heat, until lightly browned. Add all of the prepared vegetables and sauté together for an additional 5 minutes until the onions are translucent. Add the black bean paste to the wok and mix together until evenly distributed. Then add 2 cups of chicken broth (or water) and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Cover the wok and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes (or when your potatoes are soft). Uncover, then pour in the potato starch mixture. Let the sauce thicken for several minutes, then finish the sauce with 1 teaspoon of sesame oil.
Prepare the noodles:
Try to get the noodles that are in the refrigerated section of the Korean grocery. They should be labeled as “jjajangmyeon” or “짜장면” noodles. If you cannot find these, then dried wheat noodles or even spaghetti noodles will be ok. Boil the noodles according to the package instructions. Or if you want, you can use the sauce on top of rice instead!
Place your noodles in a bowl, and then smother them with the sauce on top. Finish with the cucumber garnish. Serve with yellow pickled radish (단무지) or kimchi. Mix well before taking your first bite. For best results, eat while watching a good Korean drama!