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JANG 장 – The Korean sauce and paste (and a last name) learn the different types!

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Jang , the Korean sauce and paste (and a popular last name) is the staple of Korean cuisine. As a sauce, it nicely compliments other food such as vegetables and raw fish, and as a paste, it becomes the base of numerous Korean soups and casseroles, including doenjangguk 된장국 (“bean paste soup”) and kimchijjigae 김치찌개 (“kimchi casserole”). Traditionally, this versatile ingredient comes in 4 different types.

Watch this awesome video clip covering the making of Korean soy sauce.
Taste of Wisdom – Ep05C02 Soy sauce passed down for generations by ARIRANG TV

National Institute of Korean Language, CC BY-SA 2.0 KR https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/kr/deed.en, via Wikimedia Commons

Ganjang 간장 soy sauce

Makganjang 막간장– Common soy sauce made by dipping meju 메주, bricks of fermented soybeans.
Gyeopjang 겹장 – Thick, aged soy sauce made by mixing soy sauce with meju.
Eoganjang 어간장 – Soy sauce made from fish which is fermented for more than a year with salt.

Korean Soy Sauce – Sempio Naturally Brewed Soy Sauce for Soup, Chosun, 31.45Fl Oz, 930mL [Amazon]

Image by eunyoung lee from Pixabay

Doenjang 된장 – bean paste

된장찌개 doenjang jjigae Bean Paste Soup
Image by jyleen21 from Pixabay

Tojang 토장 – Made by mashing the meju that’s not been used for making ganjang.           
Makdoenjang 막된장 – Made by mixing meju after using it for making soy sauce with salt, barley rice, and chili powder.

최광모, CC BY-SA 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

CJ Haechandle Soybean Paste, Korean Doenjang, 500g (1lb) [Amazon]

Cheonggukjang 청국장 – fermented bean paste

Cheonggukjang 청국장 – Made by crushing the salted boiled beans that were fermented for 2-3 days.
Dambukjang 담북장 – Made by adding minced radish and ginger to cheonggukjang. The fundamental difference between cheonggukjang and soybean paste lies in the fermentation period and the salt content.

Image by jinwoo lee from Pixabay

Gochujang 고추장 – made with red pepper powder, glutinous rice, meju powder, malt, and salt

회덮밥 hoedeopbap
Image by Lisy_ from Pixabay

Chogochujang 초고추장 – Made by mixing gochujang with vinegar. Popularly used as a dressing for hoedeopbap 회덮밥 (“rice bowl with raw fish”) and a dipping sauce for raw fish. 

Image by Jung Hyeyoung from Pixabay

Chung Jung One O’Food Medium Hot Gochujang (200g) [Amazon]

Ssamjang 쌈장 – Spicy paste made by mixing gochujang and doenjang, along with sesame oil, garlic, scallions, and onion. Used when eating ssam – food wrapped in a leaf.

Image by ally j from Pixabay

Meju 메주 – A brick of dried fermented soybeans that serve as the basis of Korean jang. It’s made by crushing, pounding, and kneading the cooked soybeans into a brick shape, which then goes through the fermentation process. Colloquially, maybe because of its bumpy and rough texture, meju  is used as a metaphor for an ugly person.

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