Today’s recipe is another winter favorite of mine! Kongbiji jjigae (콩비지 찌게) is a stew that’s made with a creamy purée of soaked soybeans. Traditionally, this stew is made with soy pulp that’s left from making tofu. It’s also commonly made with finely ground soaked soybeans. Growing up, we usually had it with pork ribs and kimchi. I think that’s the best way! You can use pork meat instead, preferably fatty meat. Pork fat enhances the nutty flavor of soybeans. You can also substitute kimchi with boiled napa cabbage for a milder taste. All you need is a bowl of rice with this warm, smooth, nutty, meaty and filling stew for the ultimate winter comfort food!
1 cup dry soybeans (yields 2-1/4 cups soaked)
12 ounces (340 grams) pork ribs (or 6 ounces pork shoulder*)
2 thinly sliced ginger pieces
1/4 medium onion
1 tablespoon soup soy sauce
8 ounces (230 grams) kimchi, cut into bite sizes
1/2 cup juice from kimchi (or to taste)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 scallion, roughly chopped
(*If using pork meat instead of ribs, stir fry it with the kimchi, add 2-1/2 cups of water or anchovy stock and boil for 5 minutes over medium high heat before adding the soy purée.)
Rinse and soak 1 cup dried soybeans for 5 – 6 hours (or overnight). Rub the beans with your fingers to remove the skins, and pour out the skins that rise to the top. Repeat this process to remove as much as possible.
Add the ribs, onion, ginger, soup soy sauce and 4 cups of water to a medium size pot. Bring to a boil. Skim off the scum. Reduce the heat to medium low. Cover, and cook until the ribs are tender, 25 – 30 minutes. Remove the onion and ginger.
Add the kimchi and garlic to the pot. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Continue to cook for 5 – 6 minutes.
Meanwhile, finely grind the soaked beans in an equal amount of cold water (2 to 2-1/2 cups) until it becomes creamy.
Add the ground soybeans to the pot. Reduce the heat to medium low.
Simmer, uncovered, until the soybean puree is cooked, 12 – 15 minutes. Further reduce the heat, if necessary, to maintain a gentle simmer. Stir in the chopped scallions with 2 – 3 minutes remaining. Taste for salt. Serve hot with a bowl of rice.