Tuesday, September 11

Food: Jap Chae

Korean food is becoming all the craze in Manila. But even before we moved back, my husband and I already have our taste of Korean restaurants. One of the places that stood out for us was Tofu House down at Atlanta. Like Bulgogi Garden in Quezon City, they serve unlimited starters for free. Jap chae was my favorite. I first had jap chae in the Philippines, back when I was still living with my parents. My mom usually gets some from the market every weekend.  So each Sunday, I get my jap chae fix.

While living in the US, I used to watch Mom's Cooking on Lifetime online, and I came about this episode about a Korean mom and daughter. Oh my goodness, the mom was doing jap chae, and she's teaching her daughter how to make some. That meant, there's a free recipe somewhere. :P

I saved that recipe.

Here it is, courtesy of Joyce and Diana for Mom's Cooking.

Here are some quick cooking notes from me --
* To save some time, you can buy the ready-made kalbi sauce as marinade for the beef.
* Never ever substitute sesame oil in this recipe. It makes it taste authentic.
* Same thing, only use sweet potato starch noodles.
* You can use bok choy instead of baby spinach.

Jap Chae (Noodles with Beef and Vegetables)

• 10-14 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked in warm water for 20 minutes

Marinade for Beef 
• 8 oz. ground round beef, thinly sliced
MommyG's note: You can buy frozen beef slices, like the ones they use in sukiyaki. Thinner ones are usually better.
• pinch of sugar
• 1/4 cup soy sauce
• 3 garlic cloves, minced
• pinch black pepper
• 2-3 tbsp sesame oil
• pinch salt

For Noodles 
16 oz. vermicelli noodles sesame oil to taste soy sauce to taste
MommyG's note: In the video, they used sweet potato starch noodles, and I really recommend this kind.

For Spinach
• 24 oz. baby spinach, blanched
• salt to taste
• sesame oil to taste

For Stir Fry
• 1 large carrot, julienne
• 1/2 red bell pepper, julienne
• 1/2 large onion, sliced
• 3 scallions, cut into 1 inch pieces
• vegetable oil
• sugar to taste
• sesame oil to taste
• soy sauce to taste
• sesame seeds

1. Soak mushrooms in warm water for 15-20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile prepare beef. Slice beef and sprinkle with sugar. Add to a bowl with soy sauce, garlic, black pepper, sesame oil and salt. Mix. Cover and marinate in fridge for 15-20 minutes.
3. Add vermicelli noodles to salted boiling water. Cook for 10 minutes until soft. Once cooked drain well and place into a large bowl. Drizzle soy sauce and sesame oil to prevent noodles from sticking. Set aside.
4. Blanch spinach in salted boiling water for 30 seconds and soak into cold water. Squeeze the spinach to remove all liquid. Place into a bowl and drizzle with sesame oil. Place spinach on top of noodles.
5. Julienne carrot, bell pepper, onion, and scallions. Drain and slice shitake mushrooms. Stir-fry each vegetable separately with a little vegetable oil each to the noodles as they are cooked. Once all the veggies are cooked using the same pan stir-fry the beef until cooked through for about 5 minutes. Place beef on top of the noodles and veggies. Mix well adding more sesame oil, soy sauce and sugar to taste. Top with sesame seeds. Serve.

Serves 6
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  1. Would you believe I've neve tried this ever? The thing is, my hubby is the only Korean food lover in our household, so we never really searched for a good Korean resto back when we were in Chicago. Hopefully, when we go to st. Louis, i'll try this soon!

    1. At first I was also hesitant to try Korean food. But kalbi and jap chae had me at hello. Haha. Try a Korean BBQ place and order some kalbi (or galbi) beef. I'm sure even your kids will love it. :)


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