I don’t remember when or who introduced me to Korean food, it might’ve been a Korean friend from high school that I don’t talk to anymore but what I do remember is that Kimchi Jigae was the first dish I kind of fell in love with. That meant it was also the first dish that I tried making on my own!
Did you know that Kimchi Jigae, Soondubu, and similar stews use a anchovy soup base? I was in denial about that for the longest time. So initially, when I tried making Kimchi Jigae in college, I used a Miso base soup and it was fine-I liked it but it definitely felt like it was missing something. I call it my faux Kimchi Jigae recipe, which I make when I don’t know what else to make or when i’m too lazy to try to make anything else.
The first time I came to actually acknowledge that anchovies were in these Korean dishes were when I made Soondubu with Unnie (in this post). This time, I didn’t really find a recipe online- I remember the basics of how to make this dish from my past research so I basically came up with my own recipe, no big deal. :3
Here’s the lowdown:
- Cook some pork belly (or bacon, up to you- I always use bacon when I dont have anything else).
- Toss in some kimchi and some kimchi juice (if you can, squeeze that juice outta the kimchi first).
- Add in some water
- Add in the gochujang and red pepper flakes
- Toss in some dried kelp/anchovies (since I had the prepacked dried anchovy and kelp, I used that)
- BOIL (toss out the kelp and anchovies after)
Before anyone says anything- the soup looks different because of the lighting! It was delicious though- added some enoki mushrooms and tofu into it as well.
This was definitely a huge improvement from the very first Jigae I made, it tasted more like the Kimchi Jigae that I would get at a restaurant. I still like my faux jigae though. 🙂