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.
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)
If you buy frozen small squids, thaw them out in the refrigerator.
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.
Scrub the squid to remove some any bubbles or foam.
Rinse the squid in cold water a couple of times and drain it.
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)
Press it down to minimize exposure to the air. Close the lid and keep it in the refrigerator for 1 month.
1 month later, wash, rinse, and strain the fermented squid.
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
Dry the squid with a cotton cloth or paper towels.
Chop the squid into small pieces and put them into the red paste and mix well.
Transfer it into a container or jar and keep it in the refrigerator.
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:
Put some cleaned squid into boiling water, cook for about 20 or 30 seconds and drain.
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