One of the most popular stews/jjigae in Korea...! There's many, many variations of Kimchi Jjigae- vegetarian that includes tofu or silken tofu, or with tuna, seafood, beef, sausage, ham, or pork--! I guess that just shows how much Koreans love kimchi, and how this spicy ingredient is so versatile and complements a wide variety of other ingredients. My favorite type of kimchi jjigae is with pork-- the hearty pork balances nicely with the light tofu, and contributes a wonderful flavor to the overall dish. I used pork tenderloin, but you can use really any cut of pork that is tender (I've used pork neck several times before). I usually include rice cakes to add another starchy element to the stew, but if you don't have it on hand, you may omit it. This jjigae tastes better when you use overly ripe, sour kimchi, so don't throw away that kimchi that's sitting in your fridge, but use it to make stew!
currently listening to:
Lee Eun Mi- I have a lover
one of the best live versions of this song: Taeyeon, from Girls' Generation-- so talented!
3 cups ripe kimchi
2-4 cups water (add more or less depending on your preference for how thick you want the stew/soup, and how long you want it to simmer)
1/2 pack of tofu (soft or firm, depending on your preference)
1/2 cup kimchi liquid (leftover liquid from the bottom of the kimchi jar)
1/2 cup chopped green onion
1 Tablespoon hot pepper powder
1/2 Tablespoon gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
a handful of rice cakes
1/2 lb pork tenderloin
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon cooking wine
salt and black pepper
prep time: 5-10 min
cook time: 20 min
slightly adapted from Aeri's Kitchen
1. Chop the pork into bite size pieces. In a small bowl, combine the pork, garlic, cooking wine, black pepper and salt, and let sit for at least 10 minutes.
2. Chop the kimchi into bite sized pieces. Chop the green onion and slice the tofu into 1/4 inch slices.
3. In a pot, heat the sesame oil on medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the pork, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add the olive oil and the kimchi, along with the hot pepper powder. Cook for 5 minutes until the kimchi just begins to brown.
4. Add the water and the kimchi liquid to the pot. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, cover and let simmer for 10 minutes. Taste and add salt if necessary.
5. Place the tofu and the rice cakes in the pot, cover, and cook for 5 minutes.
6. Add the green onions to the pot, cover and cook for 2 more minutes.
Serve with a bowl of white rice! This tastes even better the next day!