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.

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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.

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  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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169 Comments:

  1. mase kul joined 12/10 & has 13 comments

    Hi Maangchi

    My first ojingojeot (22/12)was a success. I finished them in 2 days. Now I’m waiting for my squid to be ready (17/3) and let my sister’s family have a taste. I didn’t have any left for them to try the first time. They are great fans of Korean food and always enjoy the Korean dishes that I prepared.

    “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.” – Are you really referring to the ojingojeot or the salted squid cos my ojingojeot will not last more than 2 days in my fridge.

    Thnx for the delicious recipe.

  2. Lisbon88 Boston, MA joined 2/10 & has 4 comments

    Despite the dubious looks my family gave while I was salting the squid, I soldiered on & was rewarded by an incredibly flavorful condiment. The first night I served a small bit with a ton of rice and your eggplant side dish and a Chinese style green bean dish. My family LOVED it. I’ve been eating it every day with lunch since. Thank you for yet another wonderful recipe.

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      “Despite the dubious looks my family gave while I was salting the squid, I soldiered on & was rewarded by an incredibly flavorful condiment” lol lol.

  3. bertintowncenter florida joined 9/08 & has 3 comments

    I am Making this Ojingejeot !! I know its Great because I Love Ojingeochae Muchim and Kimchi with Squid !! Congrats to Maangchi !! I want You to know Maangchi is THE BEST Korean cooking Teacher in the World and I am Soo Happy She teaches us all so well !

  4. Isabelle Stockholm joined 11/10 & has 3 comments

    Maangchi, what other fish can we ferment like this? Now it is February and it is not squid season. And I had another question: what do you think about mussles? I haven’t seen you use it. I looked it up and saw that mussles eat debris from the sea whereas oysters eat plankton. Is that why you don’t use it? Thank you Maangchi!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      Yes, you can make Korean jeotgal (salted and fermented seafood) with clams, oysters, mussels, and anchovies. More jeotgal recipes will be posted in the future.

  5. oksipak California joined 1/11 & has 72 comments

    Sunday, February 20, 2011: About two hours ago, I took the salted squid out that had been sitting in the fridge for a month. It didn’t smell and was a beautiful color. Made the sauce last night because I was so anxious to combine everything together this morning. Needless to say, the seconds the mix was complete, I ate some with hot rice. DELICIOUS! Well worth the prep and wait. Thanks Maagnchi.

  6. orangetkdgirl Seattle, WA joined 7/09 & has 5 comments

    Hi Maangchi! I fermented my ohjingeo for a month, but when I pulled it out it had mold on it!! :( Can it still be used, or should I try again? And what should I do next time to make sure it doesn’t get mold?

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      It depends on how moldy it is. If the mold is only on the top, then I would rinse it off thoroughly until it’s not slippery and remove the skin of the squid before adding seasonings. If the mold has spread throughout, I would give up eating it.

      Next time if you make it again, use more salt and don’t forget to sprinkle some salt on top of the squid in the container and keep it in the fridge.

      Don’t give up making delicious ojingeojeot. : )

  7. Michelle Elias joined 2/11 & has 1 comment

    Hello Maangchi,

    I really enjoyed watching your videos, im a Filipina and i really want to try your recipes, just want to ask, i think i couldnt find pepper flakes here in Qatar, what we have her is chilli powder and chilli flakes, can i use those? and also can i keep the squid for 2 weeks only? i just feel excited to taste this recipe, hope to get your response :) Thanks

    • bertintowncenter florida joined 9/08 & has 3 comments

      Your Chilli Flakes will be fine ! –just be sure Your squid are well salted and in “airtight containers ” before fridge —ok ! After Your 2 weeks Rinse rinse rinse – to get away the salt !! You can Do 1 week or 2 week up to 4 week —

      -Bertintowncenter

  8. roseplum Indonesia joined 1/11 & has 1 comment

    uhn nee, it’s this squid after fermented still have fishy smell?
    can i use lemon, so the squid not smell fishy?

  9. mystyle joined 12/10 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi,
    Just wanted to let you know that I finished making your ojingeojeot for the first time tonight and I couldn’t believe how good it tasted! Thank you for sharing this recipe! Can’t wait to let my husband try it when he comes back from his business trip. He is going to fall off his chair:)

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      ” when he comes back from his business trip. He is going to fall off his chair:)” I wish he really fell off his chair without injury because of your delicious ojingeojeot. : )

  10. muskratbyte Fort Worth joined 1/11 & has 7 comments

    I just started a batch of ojingeojeot tonight…. I’m crossing my fingers! Wish me luck!

  11. CrazyC joined 3/10 & has 5 comments

    If I wanted to make this less spicy, how much chili peppers can I put in? Maybe half of a red one, and half of a green one? Or should I put the original amount, but leave the seeds out?

  12. tcdavid joined 1/11 & has 1 comment

    can i replace the squid with shrimp? would that make saeujeot?
    i made a little jar of kimchi last night but i’d like to try it with seafood..can i just throw in some shrimp in with the rest or do i have to ferment it first?
    i really like your website it’s always helpful :)

  13. Jujube New York City joined 1/11 & has 1 comment

    Hi, I a Korean-American and I really like your site because it helps me get in touch with my Korean side. I love your website and have been using it to cook Korean food for my parents. My Mom and Dad are so surprised and really happy when I make korean food for them. They say that I should be okay to marry a korean guy now. LOL ^_^ My mom loves this Ojingeojeot and I am secretly making it for her. I also made some extra seasoning paste and mixed it with some raw oyster so we could eat it right away. My mom was really happy. Thank you so much for your website and recipes Maangchi!!!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      haha, they said you could marry a Korean guy? That’s so cute! I hope your mom is very impressed with your ojingoejeot. Send me a photo if you can and let me know about your mom’s reaction. : )
      ” I also made some extra seasoning paste and mixed it with some raw oyster so we could eat it right away.” great! oh, I feel like fermented and seasoned oyster now,

  14. kartran Boston joined 12/10 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi, I love this recipe but I think my finished product is too salty. I’ve already added the squid to the hot pepper mix, so is there a way to reduce the saltiness? Should i resoak the whole thing in water?

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,773 comments

      There is nothing much to do about salty ojingeojeot. However, If I were you, I would take some from the jar or container and mix with chopped cucumber right before serving.

  15. JellyBelly joined 11/10 & has 5 comments

    Ah, I fermented my squid a month ago and was so anxious to see the results!! Yesterday I finished making it, but the squid looked a little darker than yours… Is this a sign of old squid?? :( I bought mine at an Asian seafood supermarket in a frozen box just like yours! >.<

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