This easy vegetable side dish is flavored with doenjang (fermented soybean paste). You can make this recipe with various different green leafy vegetables.
Simply seasoned with doenjang, fermented soybean paste, this dish is a country style vegetable side dish. In general, the vegetable dishes that are seasoned with doenjang is called doenjang muchim (된장무침).
Young cabbage called putbaechu (풋배추) or eolgari (얼가리) is one of the vegetables commonly used for this dish. Often, I also use napa cabbage, baby bok choy, spinach, or kale (or baby kale). Any other green leafy vegetables would also work. Just remember to adjust the blanching time.
You can add a little gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes) or gochujang (Korean red chili pepper paste) to make it a bit spicy or sweeten it with a bit of sugar. I like to keep it simple and savor the unique, deep flavor of the doenjang.
This side dish is great with any Korean meal. We enjoyed it for two meals this week – first with bulgogi and then with bukeoguk next day.
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Putbaechu (Young Cabbage) Doenjang MuchimSide Dish
- 2 bunches young cabbage (putbaechu, 풋배추) - about 8 ounces each - See note for substitutes.
- 1 tablespoon (or to taste) doenjang, fermented soybean paste
- 1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil or perilla seed oil s
- 2 teaspoons sesame seeds (roasted and crusted)
- 1 teaspoon gochugaru or gochujang - optional adjust to taste
- 1 teaspoon sugar (or oligo syrup) - optional
- Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add a tablespoon of salt. Blanch the cabbage until the white parts turn soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the cabbage from the pot and shock in cold water to stop the cooking.
- Drain, and tightly squeeze out water. Cut into 2 to 3-inch lengths.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix everything well by hand. Adjust the seasoning to taste by adding more doenjang (or gochujang or gochugaru for the spiciness). Let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes before serving for the flavor of the seasonings to seep into the cabbage.