Braised soybeans – referred to as kongjang ( 콩장) or kongjabang (콩자반) is a sweet and salty black soybean side dish. They are just a tad chewy to give it great texture. Traditionally, these are made with dry black soybeans and so while there is a waiting period while the beans soak, the cooking part is super simple and very quick!
I didn’t grow up eating a lot of “banchan” or Korean “side dishes”. Often, my mom made big delicious main meals that didn’t really need too much more to go with it except for delicious kimchi. But since I’m not as fast of a cooker as my super mom and with a busy work week, I’ve begun to notice that having some pre-made side dishes help with the weeknight dinners. Side dishes make a quick soup or stew feel more like a fully thought out meal and since they’re pre-made, they can last long in the refrigerator.
This side dish is from Kim Soo-Mi’s TV show (수미네반찬), like the Seoul Bulgogi dish. All you have to do is soak and boil soybeans, and then add in the seasoning. Some recipes add the honey earlier in the boiling process but it’s key to add it right before the beans are taken off the heat to make sure the sugar and honey do not reach too high of a temperature which could harden the beans when cooled. I love these little tips that are offered by her TV show and so will try out more as they come!
Enjoy these sweet and salty soybeans with a bowl of hot white rice!
P.S. Korean Name for this dish:
- kongjaban (콩자반)
- kongjang (콩장)
And of course, some fun clips!