Korean Noodles With Black Bean Sauce (Jajangmyun)

Jajangmyeon
stu_spivack/Flickr
Ratings (50)
  • Total: 35 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Yield: 6-8 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
850 Calories
18g Fat
140g Carbs
39g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6-8 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 850
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 3g 14%
Cholesterol 11mg 4%
Sodium 1875mg 82%
Total Carbohydrate 140g 51%
Dietary Fiber 20g 72%
Protein 39g
Calcium 99mg 8%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Jajangmyun (Chajangmyun, Jjajang myun) is one of the most popular noodle dishes in Korea, even though it actually originated in China, not Korea. It is the Korean adaptation of a Chinese black bean noodle dish with the same name, and you can find it in every Chinese restaurant in Korea.

Jajangmyun differs from its Chinese counterpart, zhajiangmian, by virtue of its sauce. In China, the sauce for zhajiangmian is made with yellow soybean paste, hoisin sauce or a sauce made from broad beans. However, the Korean version of the dish, jajangmyun, is crafted with a dark sauce made from a paste containing caramel and roasted soybeans. This paste is called chunjang.

To make the sauce for ​jajangmyun, you stir-fry the vegetables, meat, and chunjang with sesame oil, sugar, and garlic, add water and carrots, then thicken it with cornstarch. The result is a salty-sweet, thick dark sauce that goes especially well with noodles, pork, and vegetables.

Jajangmyun is delicious and satisfying but inexpensive to buy or make, so it's a favorite home-cooked or takeout meal among almost all Koreans. It's most common to use wide, thick noodles made from wheat flour for jajangmyun, but if you can't find any noodles that are intended specifically for this dish, you easily can substitute wide buckwheat noodles or even linguine.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups pork loin (diced)
  • 4 medium potatoes (peeled and diced)
  • 2 medium onions (diced)
  • 1 medium zucchini (diced)
  • 2 cups black bean paste (chunjang, but it might also say jajang on the package)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons garlic (minced)
  • 6 1/2 cups water (divided)
  • 3 carrots (peeled and diced)
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 pounds flat, thick noodles (dry or fresh)
  • Toppings
  • Raw onion (sliced thinly, to taste)
  • White vinegar (to taste)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a large oiled skillet or wok, sauté pork and potatoes for 2 to 3 minutes.

  3. Add onion and zucchini and continue to sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.

  4. Add bean paste, sesame oil, sugar, and garlic to the pan, stirring to combine. Sauté for 3 to 4 minutes.

  5. Add 6 cups of water and the carrots and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.

  6. Mix cornstarch with 1/2 cup cold water.

  7. Pour into the sauce to thicken and cook for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

  8. Prepare noodles according to package directions.

  9. Place a large helping of noodles in a big soup bowl. Ladle the jajang sauce over the noodles (myun).

  10. Serve with sliced raw onions and white vinegar on the side (to splash onto the noodles).

  11. Enjoy!

Tips

  • If you can't find the noodles, you can also use buckwheat, udon, or linguine noodles.