Recipes

Fermented squid side dish

Ojingeojeot 오징어젓

Today I’m pleased to introduce a kind of fermented seafood made with squid to you. Fermented seafood is called jeotgal (젓갈) in Korean. Korea is surrounded by ocean on 3 sides, so you’ll imagine that a variety of fresh fish and seafood dishes are available all year round. My Korean ancestors wanted to enjoy their fresh fish for a long time so they developed a way of preserving fresh fish by fermenting it with salt. Jeotgal is eaten by itself after being seasoned, or its used in kimchi making.

I used to make salty fermented anchovies every year when I lived in Korea. It was very easy to make! I mixed fresh anchovies with a lot of salt and put them into a huge earthenware jar. About 6 months later, the achovy jeot fermented well! I used to use them in my kimchi paste, or I took some from the jar and mixed with seasonings to use as a side dish.

Now that I’m living in the States, such fresh anchovies are not available, but I found I can make ojingeojeot with frozen small squids.

Salty fermented squid called ojingeojeot is a side dish that you can keep it in your fridge for months and months, and enjoy it right until it runs out.

Ingredients:
Small squid (fresh or frozen) 1 pound 10 oz (750 grams), 5 Tbs salt, fish sauce, hot pepper flakes, green chili pepper, red chili pepper, ginger, garlic, sesame seeds, sesame oil, mulyeot (either corn syrup or rice syrup)

Directions:

  1. If you buy frozen small squids, thaw them out in the refrigerator.
  2. Clean the squid:
    • Slice right below the triangle of the torso and cut crosswise.
    • Then put your knife right below eyes,  cut crosswise, and discard the eye part.
    • Slit the torso open lengthwise and remove the innards and the plastic looking bone.
    • Put the cleaned squid flesh into a bowl.
    • Repeat this until all squids are cleaned.
  3. Scrub the squid to remove some any bubbles or foam.
  4. Rinse the squid in cold water a couple of times and drain it.
  5. Mix 1 pound 10 oz (750 grams) of squid with ¼ cup salt. Put it into a glass jar and sprinkle another 1 tbs salt on top (total 5 tbs).
    *tip: For about 150 grams (5 ounces) of squid you’ll need to use 1 tbs kosher salt (or plain salt)
  6. Press it down to minimize exposure to the air. Close the lid and keep it in the refrigerator for 1 month.
  7. 1 month later, wash, rinse, and strain the fermented squid.
  8. Make seasoning paste. In a large bowl mix:
    • ½ cup hot pepper flakes
    • ½ cup corn syrup (or rice syrup)
    • 1 tbs fish sauce
    • 2 chopped green onions
    • 5 cloves of chopped or sliced garlic
    • 1 tbs chopped ginger
    • 2 chopped green chili peppers
    • 2 chopped red chili peppers
    • 2 tbs roasted sesame seeds
    • 1 tbs sesame oil

  9. Dry the squid with a cotton cloth or paper towels.
  10. Chop the squid into small pieces and put them into the red paste and mix well.
  11. Transfer it into a container or jar and keep it in the refrigerator.
  12. Serve with rice as a side dish.

You could add more fish sauce, hot pepper flakes, and green chili peppers if you want. As you saw in the video, I made jeot but I also cooked some squid to eat:

  1. Put some cleaned squid into boiling water, cook for about 20 or 30 seconds and drain.
  2. Serve with dipping sauce or tabasco sauce.

How to make chojang (dipping sauce):
Mix 2 tbs hot pepper paste, 1 tbs vinegar, 1 ts sugar, and 1 clove of minced garlic

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