Jajangmyeon (Korean black bean sauce noodles) is one of the most popular dishes of Korean culinary culture, appearing in many Korean books or movies. This is a typical kind of noodles and a pride of Korean cuisine.
Jajangmyeon derived from zhajiangmian (fried sauce noodles) of China. Though there’s still many theories about how it showed up, jajangmyeon was first officially introduced in Korea by a Chinese restaurant called Gonghwacheun in back 1905. Gradually, jajangmyeon has become increasingly popular and beloved there, and its taste was also changed a lot to suit Korean taste buds.
Nowadays, jajangmyeon has become one of the most familiar and typical dishes of South Korea. They even have a tradition that on Black Valentine (April 14), those who did not receive any gift on Valentine (February 14) and White Valentine (March 14) will gather together and eat this dish.
Just like many other kinds of noodles, jajangmyeon contains noodles (made from white wheat flour), meat (usually diced pork) and vegetables. However, the most special thing that makes this dish different is the sauce.
While in China, they often use yellow sauce paste, hoisin sauce or broad bean sauce, in Korea they only use a kind of black bean sauce (called chunjang, literally “spring paste”). Because this sauce is slightly bitter and salty, some people often add sugar while cooking this dish. Besides, there are also spices and herbs like liquor, salt, pepper, vinegar, ginger…
Cooking jajangmyeon is also relatively simple, does not require too many skills. You just need to boil noodles, stir-fry optional ingredients, heat up the sauce and then mix them together to have a delicious plate of jajangmeyon. The most important thing is just before cooking, you need to choose delicious black bean sauce, just right Korean style.
Currently, enjoying normal jajangmyeon of Koreans is quite easy, because Korea restaurants present almost everywhere in the world. However, coming to Korea, you will have the opportunity to enjoy more special dishes.
There are many special kinds of jajangmyeon. Among them, the most famous ones are: kaan jajang, uni jajang, sacheon jajang, jaeng-ban jajang, yetnal jajang, jjajangbap and jjamjamyeon. Each dish has its own cooking style with custom recipes, guaranteed to leave a mark on your memory after leaving the country.