Food Gochujang: the most useful ingredient in the world???

Discussion in 'UK Wine Forum' started by Richard Ward, Mar 26, 2020 at 9:44 AM.

  1. Last night I braised some pork cheeks for dinner and made Kieran Smith's Gochujang glaze for them (Gochujang, light soy sauce, honey, orange juice), then served this with crushed peanuts, sauteed pak choi and steamed rice:


    It occured to me just how incredible Gochujang is as an ingredient and how much I use it - i'd used it a couple of days earlier in a dressing for a cold noodle salad and always incorporate it into stir fried dishes. In fact I'm probably on my 3rd tub of it in about 6 months. It has a great depth of flavour but also gives instant body to sauces, dressings and glazes.

    Any other fans out there?? Or are there any other contenders for an ingredient as brilliant and versatile???
  2. I would say not-I find it cloying for general use (unlike doenjang, miso and doubanjiang) with its high glucose component, though it certainly has its uses.
    My new discovery is the amazing, and quite expensive, Red Boat fish sauce, which oddly doesn't proclaim its superiority at loud volume when used in its expected SE asian context but as an ingredient in western foods. It gives an unbelievable natural depth of flavour without any glutamate zing, and for those who like, for example, a little anchovy in their lamb, this ingredient simply does it better; add it to a vinaigrette for real perfection, though one should be careful not to use it in everything.
    According to the leading authority on the subject Red Boat is as close as can be to the best quality Roman Garum.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 9:56 AM
  3. I really can't get on with Miso - I find it oddly sickly in almost any context.
  4. Fair enough, though as with gochuchang it may depend on the quality and lots of it is awful-Korean doenjang which is sort of the same thing is generally a greatly superior product and it's worth buying the most expensive grade.
    I particularly like gochujang instead of miso in nasu dengaku, the Japanese glazed aubergine dish.
  5. Lucullus?
  6. Sally Grainger of Reading University.
  7. Richard,

    which brand? Make a photo, if possible.

    Looks very LECKER

    Stay healthy,
  8. P.S. I wanted to order the fish boat fishsauce a couple of weeks ago, as many food blogger raved about it. Unfortunately I forgot to include it in my order. Next time!
  9. Hands up. This is the first time I have ever heard of Gochujang....
  10. Where to get the fish sauce and the doenjang?

    I agree gochujang is amazing although right now not so useful to me as I'm cooking for the children all the time.
  11. Amazon
    Nick Amis likes this.
  12. 15852243987733771213328452984377.jpg
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  13. How hot is it Richard?
  14. Not very hot at all really. About as subtle as tomato ketchup or hoisin sauce, though, so for preparations bracing rather than elegant.
    Richard Zambuni likes this.
  15. Not very at all, in fact I often garnish with chopped raw bird's eyes.
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  16. Grief, is that it?

    Gochuchang is a (yet another) chilli paste but this one is as hot as tomato ketchup - I won't be looking for it in Waitrose when I'm allowed back into society in 3 months time.

    Now, if we're talking chilli sauces, I tasted around the stalls at a chilli fair some years ago and ever since I've been buying Fat Man Chilli

    Numero Uno has a good balance of heat and flavour, Green Chilli Sauce has a great flavour and is not so hot and Scorchio does what it's name suggests.

    And, like Richard, I like adding raw chopped chillis to my food - good flavour and heat is Prairie Fire (Page 49 of February RHS magazine) but many seeds in its bullet shaped chillies, and Spike, inch long very thin and easily chopped with scissors, nice taste and heat. Both are bush type, easily grown in pots and both produce hundreds of chillies in a year.


    Final harvest 2019, Prairie Fire, Spike and Rooster Spur . I won't grow the latter again because its chillies are too small, though they have a kick. Prairie Fire are the fat bullet-shaped ones at top right, the long thin ones are Spike, the small ones are Rooster Spur.
    Nick Amis likes this.
  17. I think Tom meant gochujang is conspicuous in the same way ketchup is, Peter. It's definitely hotter but it won't be setting fires any time soon.

    I quite like it but I'd love access to different/better qualities. Doubanjiang is good fun too. Miso really varies for me, luckily we can get our hands on high quality imported japanese miso quite easily, and the difference is monumental compared to miso produced domestically. Most US produced miso is really repulsive to me, essentially one of the worst things that could be on a plate as far as I'm concerned.
    Thom Blach likes this.
  18. It is a chilli paste, but it's much more than that - it has a very deep flavour, not unlike a sundried tomato (though, obviously, chilli rather than tomato flavour), and as it is fermented it is highly umami. I do not find it sweet, though I understand some versions can be. Nor is it hot - rounded, background warmth is the best description.

    As I said before, it is a wonderful addition to Asian style salad dressings - adding savoriness, depth and body - also to stir fries. The glaze I make is the recipe of Kieran Smith, former head chef of The Box Tree in Ilkley - he serves it on Sweetbreads but it works brilliantly on crispy pork belly slices, braised pork cheeks, chicken wings, ribs...

    2 TB Gochujang
    1 TB Honey (clear, runny)
    2-3 TB Light Soy Sauce
    The juice of half an Orange

    Using a mini whisk (the ones for salad dressings) combine the Gochujang and Honey, then gradually add the Soy Sauce to the required thickness. Finish with the Orange, adjusting the balance of sweet/salt to your personal preference. If it seems too thin add a little more Gochujang. If you would prefer more tang in the glaze, add a tsp of Rice Vinegar or the juice of a lime.
  19. I once accidentally discovered that if you mix American miso, nutritional yeast, rice vinegar, oil and sesame seeds in the right proportions, you get a substance that not only looks but smells exactly like the contents of a baby’s nappy
    Nick Amis likes this.
  20. I have so many questions but I doubt I truly want the answers.
    Thom Blach likes this.
  21. I'm in a mischievous mood, so I'll ask it.

    So Dan, does it also taste the same ? :)
  22. My daughter is getting into Korean cooking and uses this version which is not sweet, she adds sugar (caster sugar dissolves easily) when needed. Says has reasonable botty burn quotient. 20200327_100627.jpg
  23. Most of what I eat is Korean food as my wife is from there and she likes cooking, so happy days. Best place to buy Korean food is H-Mart in New Malden and in second place Korea Foods in New Malden as well. You will find various varieties of gochujung. It is an essential ingredient of bibimbap and it is also quite nice by itself as a vegetable dip. If you like gochujung I recommend cho-gochujung - which is a bit more runny, a bit fresher, it is a vinaigrette and works well with noodles and seafood.
    Thom Blach and Alistair Scott like this.

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