I discovered japchae probably two years ago. Even though it was only from food court and it was not authentic, I still liked the dish a lot. The texture of the noodles was the most memorable. It was chewy and bouncy. And, I like the hint of sweetness. Recently, I have tried it again in a Korean restaurant. I loved it and I knew that I would love to make it at home. Last night, I made the noodles. It was good. Bryan and I both like how it tasted. It was like the one from restaurant. Although there are many steps to this recipe, it is worth the work and time for sure. Give this a try!
Japchae (Korean Sweet Potato Noodles) (Adapted from seriouseats.com)
2 – 3 servings
– 6 ounces beef (cut into ¼ inch thick strips)
– 8 ounces sweet potato noodles (dangmyeon)
– 4 ounces spinach (rinsed)
– ½ medium onion (sliced)
– 6 – 8 medium shiitake mushrooms (sliced)
– 1 carrot (cut into thin strips)
– 3 green onions (cut into 1-inch pieces)
– 3 garlic cloves (minced)
– ¼ cup, plus 1 teaspoon soy sauce
– 3 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon sugar
– 1 tablespoon, plus 1 ½ sesame oil
– 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
– toasted sesame seeds
- In a small bowl, combine the beef, garlic, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon sesame oil. Marinate them for at least 30 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine ¼ cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, and 3 tablespoons sugar. Mix well and set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil in high heat. Cook the noodles for 4 – 5 minutes. Drain and rinse thoroughly under cold water. Do not overcook. Cut the noodles with scissors into 6 – 7 inches lengths for easier eating.
- In a medium pot, bring water to boil. Season with salt. Blanch the spinach for 30 seconds. Rinse under cold water. Form the spinach leaves into a ball, and squeeze out the water. In a small bowl, separate the leaves. Combine with ½ teaspoon sesame oil and a dash of salt. Set aside.
- In a large pan over medium-high heat, heat the vegetable oil. Add the beef and cook for 3 – 4 minutes. Take out the beef and set aside.
- In the same pan, add the onion, mushroom, and carrot. Cook until the onion is translucent, about 3 minutes. Move everything over to the side, and leave the center empty. Put the noodles in the middle. Add the soy sauce and sugar mixture into the noodles. Mix well and cook for 2 minute. Add the beef and spinach and cook for 1 minute. Stir everything together. Transfer the noodles to a serving plate. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
- I used rib-eye steak for the beef. You can use any cut you want.
- Sweet potato noodles are dried noodles. They can be easily found in Korean grocery store.