Thursday, April 12, 2012

A Go Chu Jang Recipe

I first discovered Korean food when I taught ESL at a language school back in the Philippines. My love for Korean food increased ten-fold after a trip to South Korea a couple of years ago… kimchi, bibim bap, kim bap, sam gyeop sal, give me! 

Here’s an awesome recipe that I have been waiting to share with you… This dish has been a go-to for me when in a time crunch and need to throw something together fast. It is easy, delicious, and comforting… also healthy in my book! A good mixture of meat and vegetables and some carbs on the side. When making this, feel free to use or add any vegetable you think would go well with this: spinach, zucchini, cauliflower, radish, potatoes, the choices are endless. This dish is something that will make you think of home and your mom…  

There is a secret ingredient here: go chu jang = red pepper paste, which is made from red chili powder, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans, and salt. Different flavors play all at once: spicy, sweet, and salty. Go chu jang is great for flavoring stir-fries, making meat or vegetable sauces, dipping sauces, a condiment to complete bibim bap, soups, stews, and anything you can think of. Seek it out at an Asian store near you… it’s addicting! 

Beef, Vegetables, and Go Chu Jang (Makes 6-8 servings)

1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp hot chili sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 lb ground beef
4 tbsp go chu jang (Korean red pepper paste… if you haven’t tried it, go get a tub… ASAP!)
3 carrots, diced
6 kale leaves, roughly chopped
1 small head of broccoli
1 bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, diced
1 tbsp soy sauce
½ tsp salt
8 stalks green onions, white and green parts minced

Heat olive oil and sesame oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until golden brown. Add the onions and cook until soft. Add the beef and cook until it turns light brown. Mix in the go chu jang and stir well. Throw in the carrots and cook for a minute. Toss in the kale until the leaves wilt, about a minute. Add the broccoli, stir, and let cook for about 2 minutes. Add the diced bell pepper and jalapeno, stir well, and cook for about 4 more minutes. Season with the soy sauce and salt, stir well. Turn off the heat and add the green onions. Stir for another minute.

Serve with rice. Also good in a lettuce burrito… I used Romaine here, but my favorite is Boston lettuce.     

Enjoy! Go chu jang does a lot of magic here!


  1. Your dish looks amazing! I love lettuce wraps . That way you do away with the unnecessary carbs too!

  2. Oh wow, this looks perfect! I need more broccoli recipes, I just LOVE broccoli.
    Also I have never tried go chu jang. I don't know where I can get it. I'll look around though :)

  3. I don't know much about Korean food, thanks for sharing this recipe because it looks really nice, I must search for this paste

    Life and travelling

  4. YUm!! I love a good stir fry for a quick and delicious weeknight menu :)


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