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Korea’s Doenjang
입력 2017.05.18 (14:16) 수정 2017.05.18 (14:23) News Today
자동재생
동영상영역 시작
동영상영역 끝
[Anchor Lead]

The fermented soybean paste doenjang, with its signature taste, is essential to Korean cuisine. Koreans say that when you lose your appetite, some green chilies dipped in doenjang will do the trick and restore your taste buds. Take a look.

[Pkg]

Sauce ripens under the clear blue sky. It's none other than doenjang, fermented soybean paste. The making of doenjang starts from meju which are blocks or lumps of fermented soybeans.

[Soundbite] Kim Yeong-seok(Doenjang Manufacturer) : "The taste of doenjang is determined by the yearly temperature and the person making it."

Meju blocks are first washed, removed of the rice straws and dust, and then dried. While they are being dried, brine is made. You can determine the perfect salinity of 18 degrees by floating a raw egg on the salt water and when the surface of the egg is just about the size of a 500 won Korean coin.

[Soundbite] Kim Yeong-seok(Doenjang Manufacturer) : "Brine of low salinity gives doengang a sour taste while high salinity gives a bitter taste. The right level of saltiness makes good doenjang."

Now place the meju blocks in jars and also put in some bamboo sticks to push down the meju so they won't rise. Then pour in the brine along with some dry peppers and charcoal. Close the lid and the meju will be fermented under the sun for 50 long days. After this time has passed, the meju is taken out of the salt water. The light brown liquid eventually becomes soy sauce or ganjang in Korean. And the solid parts turn into doenjang. The meju blocks are smashed apart by hand and go back into the jar. We need to wait another year for the doenjang paste to be ready for consumption. It would be wonderful to make doenjang this way at home but of course, it's not really feasible. Many homes just use store bought varieties.

[Soundbite] Song Hyeon-joo(Housewife) : "I usually use store bought doenjang. But I've come to use it in various ways, thinking of how to elevate the taste of the paste."

Here's a way to enjoy store bought doenjang deliciously. First soak some soybeans in water. Then boil the soaked beans in a pot with twice as much water as you have beans. The steamed beans are then grated in a mixer to create a creamy texture. Now mix the homemade paste and store bought doenjang in a 1 to 1 ratio. It's easy to make 'meju doenjang' which has a more savory taste and is lower in saltiness. But there's one note of caution.

[Soundbite] Prof. Lee Na-gyeom(Jangan University) : "Purchased doenjang has a shelf life. Mixing it with various ingredients will likely spoil the paste as time passes. Therefore it's better to make a moderate amount of homemade paste at one time."

This homemade paste becomes a soybean paste sauce when it's boiled and simmered down with various vegetables. The sauce is mixed with rice. The seasoned rice can then be fashioned into rice balls which children love. More sauce variations are also possible. Mix onions, citron jam, vinegar and garlic with meju doenjang and grind the mixed paste. You'll have a citron soybean paste that goes really well as a dip or dressing with crunchy vegetables.

[Soundbite] Kim Jin-suk(Housewife) : "I didn't think the kids would like doenjang but they love it. So I do want to try making it from scratch at home."

Soybean paste is super flavorful with its one of a kind indescribable taste. Enjoying it purely as seasoning is totally fine but having it combined with loads of other ingredients can be even better.
  • Korea’s Doenjang
    • 입력 2017-05-18 14:10:47
    • 수정2017-05-18 14:23:13
    News Today
[Anchor Lead]

The fermented soybean paste doenjang, with its signature taste, is essential to Korean cuisine. Koreans say that when you lose your appetite, some green chilies dipped in doenjang will do the trick and restore your taste buds. Take a look.

[Pkg]

Sauce ripens under the clear blue sky. It's none other than doenjang, fermented soybean paste. The making of doenjang starts from meju which are blocks or lumps of fermented soybeans.

[Soundbite] Kim Yeong-seok(Doenjang Manufacturer) : "The taste of doenjang is determined by the yearly temperature and the person making it."

Meju blocks are first washed, removed of the rice straws and dust, and then dried. While they are being dried, brine is made. You can determine the perfect salinity of 18 degrees by floating a raw egg on the salt water and when the surface of the egg is just about the size of a 500 won Korean coin.

[Soundbite] Kim Yeong-seok(Doenjang Manufacturer) : "Brine of low salinity gives doengang a sour taste while high salinity gives a bitter taste. The right level of saltiness makes good doenjang."

Now place the meju blocks in jars and also put in some bamboo sticks to push down the meju so they won't rise. Then pour in the brine along with some dry peppers and charcoal. Close the lid and the meju will be fermented under the sun for 50 long days. After this time has passed, the meju is taken out of the salt water. The light brown liquid eventually becomes soy sauce or ganjang in Korean. And the solid parts turn into doenjang. The meju blocks are smashed apart by hand and go back into the jar. We need to wait another year for the doenjang paste to be ready for consumption. It would be wonderful to make doenjang this way at home but of course, it's not really feasible. Many homes just use store bought varieties.

[Soundbite] Song Hyeon-joo(Housewife) : "I usually use store bought doenjang. But I've come to use it in various ways, thinking of how to elevate the taste of the paste."

Here's a way to enjoy store bought doenjang deliciously. First soak some soybeans in water. Then boil the soaked beans in a pot with twice as much water as you have beans. The steamed beans are then grated in a mixer to create a creamy texture. Now mix the homemade paste and store bought doenjang in a 1 to 1 ratio. It's easy to make 'meju doenjang' which has a more savory taste and is lower in saltiness. But there's one note of caution.

[Soundbite] Prof. Lee Na-gyeom(Jangan University) : "Purchased doenjang has a shelf life. Mixing it with various ingredients will likely spoil the paste as time passes. Therefore it's better to make a moderate amount of homemade paste at one time."

This homemade paste becomes a soybean paste sauce when it's boiled and simmered down with various vegetables. The sauce is mixed with rice. The seasoned rice can then be fashioned into rice balls which children love. More sauce variations are also possible. Mix onions, citron jam, vinegar and garlic with meju doenjang and grind the mixed paste. You'll have a citron soybean paste that goes really well as a dip or dressing with crunchy vegetables.

[Soundbite] Kim Jin-suk(Housewife) : "I didn't think the kids would like doenjang but they love it. So I do want to try making it from scratch at home."

Soybean paste is super flavorful with its one of a kind indescribable taste. Enjoying it purely as seasoning is totally fine but having it combined with loads of other ingredients can be even better.
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