Last week we investigated some of Korea’s most healthy superfoods, including Gochujang. For a more in depth look, let’s talk a little more about what Gochujang is, the health benefits, and how it can be used in your meals.
What is Gochujang?
After Kimchi, Gochujang is Korea’s most famous condiment. It consists of a unique, thick paste made from red chili peppers, glutinous rice, soybeans, and salt. And just like Kimchi, Gochujang is also fermented in the sun. Gochujang has a sweet, sour and very spicy taste, and is great for enhancing the flavor of savory meals. Gochujang is considered a diet-friendly superfood because it’s rich in protein, antioxidants and vitamins, but low in fat and calorie content.
Gochujang has many health and dietary benefits. It contains less than one gram of fat per serving, but still contains plenty of protein. Protein is essential for building lean muscle tissue and maintaining a well balanced diet.
Vitamins – Gochujang includes vitamin B2 and vitamin C. Vitamin B2 helps stabilize your metabolism by processing the calories from fat and carbohydrates. It also helps ensure a healthy, functioning thyroid. Vitamin C is essential for preventative health by protecting cells from free radical damage, the leading cause of cancer. Vitamin C can also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Capsaicin – This powerful chemical found only in spicy foods increases metabolism and the fat burning process. According to a Japanese study, women who consumed foods with capsaicin lost weight and increased their metabolism. Cancer research also indicates that capsaicin can be a helpful component of prostate cancer treatment.
How Do I Use It?
Gochujang is incredibly versatile and can be used in many meat and vegetable dishes. It is commonly found in the Korean dishes dak kalbi, kimch istew, bibimbap and tteokbokki. But don’t be afraid to experiment! Try incorporating some of these ideas into your diet:
Barbecue wings – Gochujang is a great replacement for barbecue sauce. Mix one cup of Gochujang with water to soften it and then drizzle over your wings. Add sesame seeds for garnish.
Grilled vegetables – Vegetables and salads can be bland. Instead of soaking them in fatty oils, try giving them some zest with Gochujang. Thinly spread the paste onto the vegetables with a brush and let them grill.
Sandwiches – Gochujang goes great with meat. Make your favorite meat sandwich spicy by gently dabbing a little Gochujang over the broad. You might have just found your next favorite sandwich condiment!
Get Your Korean Superfoods at Lotte Plaza Market
To find more healthy Korean superfoods, check out Lotte Plaza Market. Lotte Plaza Market is your one-stop shop for all of your Korean and asian grocery needs. With more than 10 locations in Maryland and Virginia, this growing market is always expanding and opening new markets to better serve our customers. Opened since 1976, our goal has always been to provide the best customer service and groceries to our customers. For answers to all of your questions, email us at LottePlaza.com. 1