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How to make squid jeotgal

Published: 31-Dec-2017 (03:18); Viewed: 759; Difficulty: 3 out of 10

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How to make squid jeotgal
In this article I will tell, how to make squid jeotgal. Squid jeotgal or ojingeo-jeot (오징어젓) is a very popular Korean banchan or side dish for rice. Jeotgal can be prepared fermented, or fresh. Fermentation process takes long time and high qualification of chef. Therefore here, I will give you a more simpler version, of freshly prepared squid jeotgal.

It will take two days for squid jeotgal to mature, but if you prefer, you can keep it for few weeks or even longer in the fridge (I’m not say that – health and safety precaution) for making some fermentation and develop better taste and texture.

There is not strict recipe for making squid jeotgal. Every chef do its own variations of spices, and our variation can looks strange for somebody. But this is very tasty version of ojingeo-jeot, which we like and use it virtually in every day meals.

step-by-step instructions

  1. To achieve more authentic taste, it is better to use Korean ingredients, rather that their analogues, but if you struggle to find original Korean ingredients, you can substitute them by similar one from different countries.

    Cooking of squid jeotgal takes two steps: salting and fermentation with chilli. Ingredients:
    • Ingredients for the first step:
      • Raw whole squids – 1kg. We strongly advise to use average sized whole squids.
      • Large Sea Salt crystals – 6 tbsp
      • Soju – 3 tbsp. If you do not have soju, you can easily use Shaoxing wine, widely available in many supermarkets.
      • Garlic 1 bulb
      • Ginger 2 cm piece
    • Ingredients for the second step:
      • Salted squid strips from the first step.
      • Large Sea Salt crystals – 1 tbsp
      • Soju – 3 tbsp. If you do not have soju, you can easily use Shaoxing wine, widely available in many supermarkets.
      • Garlic 1 bulb
      • Ginger 2 cm piece
      • Korean coarse red pepper powder – 8tbsp. Check the strength of this powder. 8Tbsp are perfect for the powder with strength 10000-50000 Scoville units
      • Korean Corn Syrup (물엿) – 6-8 tbsp
      • Sesame seeds – 2 tbsp
      • Korean Soy sauce Guk-ganjang (국간장) – 3 tbsp. You can substitute this Korean soy sauce to any other say sauces, or even omit it from cooking, because the original recipe of jeotgal do not have any say sauce.
      • Sesame oil – 2 tbsp
      • Fish sauce – 2 tbsp
      • Green onion – 3-4 sticks
      • Hot red chilli – 6-12. This is a very important to adjust to your taste. I prefer to use birds eye pepper, as a simplest substitution of proper Korean chilli.

  2. Clean squids. Remove thin dark skin from the squid body. Remove all intestines from inside the squid body. Remove beak, eyes and hard bits from the head. Remove skeletal rod (also known as a gladius or cephalopod). You can leave tentacles not cleaned. Please do not use hot water, keep it chilled all the time. Some peoples use salt rub for simple skin removal.

  3. Slice squids into stripes. Do remember, that it is very important to slice squids across the grains to achieve more tender texture in the final dish. Usually the squid slicing is very simple:
    • Pull of the head. Usually after cleaning, the head with tentacles already detached.
    • Cut the body along the length in the place where the skeletal rod is located. Skeletal rod should be removed at the previous step. You also can remove the flippers.
    • Cut the head to split it into separated tentacles.
    • Cut across the body into large sheets about 10-15 length.
    • Cut sheets across the grains into a thin stripes.


    After cutting, wash the squid stripes in the cold water.

  4. Salt squid. In any glass or plastic container mix the squid stripes, garlic slices (1 bulb), ginger slices (in total 2 cm piece to be sliced), wine (3 tbsp) and coarse sea salt (6 tbsp) together. Leave overnight in the fridge to salt through. Next day remove garlic and ginger from salted squids. Wash squids carefully in cold water and drain all liquid in a suitable colander.

  5. Prepare ingredients for the second step – fermentation like process. Finely slice garlic bulb, chop green onion, finely slice chilli pepper with seeds. On the picture it is only one third of all peppers were sliced. Mince or grate ginger.

  6. Mix all ingredients for the second step together. It will be much easier, if you mix all ingredients together and when you make plain paste, mix in squid strips. Or you can mix everything together at once – it will be slightly longer, but the result will be the same.

  7. Mixing all ingredients together – you should make nice uniformly looking colour. Korean coarse chilli powder with corn syrup do make nice, viscous paste, which can stick to any food. Leave in the fridge for at least 24 hours for marinating. Can leave for longer – the taste and texture will only be better.

  8. Serve squid jeotgal as any banchan food – separately in a small dish, but always be prepared to top it up, because it is so nice. These banchan food plates are match well with plain rice. When eat, take a spoon of rice and place one or two strings of squid jeotgal on top. Enjoy.



tips and tricks

  • Try to use as fresh squid as possible
  • Please do not use pre-cleaned squids – they are not good enough for this recipe.
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tags: banchan; jeotgal; korean cuisine; squid

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