Japchae (Korean Glass Noodles)

June 30, 2024

I first posted a japchae recipe four years ago that yielded the first semi-decent results in my own kitchen. I tried several times in college to recreate what my grandma had walked through with me but it never tasted the same as hers. And now years later after she passed away, I found a recipe that reminded me of what she taught me many years ago (sadly I don't have the exact food memory of her japchae stored in my taste buds so I can't definitively say it tastes just like hers). 
This newer japchae recipe includes an ingredient that my grandma used in hers: dashida, which is a beef soup powder that adds msg and beef flavoring for that extra oomph to this dish (this is easily found in any Asian grocery store). 

What is Japchae? A colorful Korean noodle dish made from sweet potato glass noodles and filled with marinated beef and lots of stir fried vegetables. It's savory and also a little sweet that's seasoned with soy sauce and sesame oil. 
The Recipe: Japchae Korean Glass Noodles from Ahnest Kitchen. 

Recipe Notes: 
  • The recipe writer Sarah Ahn works for America's Test Kitchen so her recipe reflects a quite thorough one (like the ones from ATK). Her mother also used to own a Korean restaurant so this is one of her mother's beloved recipes. This recipe has many steps since each vegetable is cooked on its own (which she says is key to making this the best japchae). It involves lots of chopping too! 
  • Since this dish is sweetened, I would start by adding a little less of the sugar measurements than Sarah suggests (especially in the last step where it says "season noodles" She suggests 2 tbs but I would start with 1 tbs or even less). I don't like overly sweet Korean food so adding less suited my taste better. 
  • Don't skip using the toasted sesame seed topping. It's a must for this dish. 

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