(The recipe for simple japchae is an improved version of the traditional stir-fried noodle and vegetables dish. Recommended by six government organizations, including the Korean Food Promotion Institute, this new recipe allows people to enjoy the dish any time and any place.)
Japchae is stir-fried glass noodles with sautéed vegetables. It's a very familiar and friendly dish for non-Koreans.
Japchae used to be served at banquets or as a holiday feast. It was enjoyed in the royal Joseon court, too. Today, diners can enjoy various tastes in the dish, as different ingredients can create different flavors.
The recipe for simple japchae, one of the government's 10 selected recipes, was developed in order to maintain the taste and texture of the ingredients so that one can enjoy it more easily.
Director Yoon Sook-ja of the Institute of Traditional Korean Food said that, “The name ‘simple japchae’ implies that the recipe and preparation of the ingredients is easy and it's easy to eat.”
“Thanks to the marinade made with unrefined and brown sugar used to stir-fry the noodles, the noodles don't get soggy. The marinade makes the noodles shiny instead. If you add other vegetables instead of meat, vegetarians can also enjoy the dish,” Yoon said.
** Recipe for simple japchae stir-fried glass noodles with vegetables
The main ingredients in simple japchae are glass noodles, unrefined sugar, brown sugar, soy sauce, carrots, onions and burdock.
** Ingredients (four servings)
Glass noodles 100g, water 4 cups (to boil the glass noodles)
Marinade for glass noodles: Unrefined sugar 1 tablespoon (12g), brown sugar 1 tablespoon (12g), soy sauce 2 tablespoons (36g), cooking oil 2 tablespoons (26g)
shredded carrots 80g, sliced onions 100g, salt 0.5 teaspoons (2g), chives 20g, cooking oil 1 tablespoon (13g)
Marinade for burdock: water 1 cup (200g), soy sauce 1 tablespoon (18g), sugar 0.5 tablespoons (6g)
Finely shred the washed and pilled burdock. Burdock has a lot of fiber and has a crunchy texture that boosts its taste.
1. Put the glass noodles into boiling water for 5 minutes. Strain and rinse with cold water.
2. Put salt on the shredded carrots and sliced onions and stir fry. Chop the chives into 5 cm lengths. Wash the burdock. Peel it and slice it into pieces each about 5 cm long and 0.3 cm thick. Simmer over a medium heat with the marinade for 10 minutes.
3. Put all the ingredients for the marinade over some heat, and stir-fry the glass noodles until they are dry. Let them cool down.
4. Mix the prepared vegetables and glass noodles together and divide into single-serving portions. Wrap any extra with parchment paper and store in the refrigerator.
5. Reheat each portion in the microwave or steamer before serving.
Director of the Institute of Traditional Korean Food Yoon Sook-ja mixes pre-prepared vegetables and glass noodles. Cooked and chilled japchae can be divided into single-serving portions and wrapped with paper and stored in the refrigerator. To eat the dish, reheat it by using a microwave for 1 minute.