Shigeumchi Namul (Korean Spinach)

Here is is another banchan (side dish) that I disliked as a child but can’t get enough of now. Korean spinach (shigeumchi namul) is one of the most popular side dishes served in Korean restaurants simply because it’s cheap, easy to make, and pretty refreshing when made correctly (which is not hard by any standards). And obviously, the health benefits are an added bonus especially for anyone who’s used to fast processed foods.The recipe below is the one I currently made. I call it the extra healthy version.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch spinach
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced (garlic powder)
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp coarse or sea salt (w boiling water)
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
Directions:
  1. Blanch the spinach in the boiling salt water for 30 seconds.
  2. Rinse under cold water and squeeze out excess water. It should resemble a baseball if done correctly.
  3. Cut a few times if pieces are larger than desired.
  4. In a small bowl, combine and mix the sesame oil, sesame seeds, minced garlic and the spinach.
  5. Rub all the ingredients thoroughly. Add salt or any other seasoning according to taste preference.
  6. Serve as a banchan (side dish) with rice.

*As with most Korean side dishes, there are endless variations according to the taste preference of its maker. For this dish, some people include dwenjang (Korean bean paste) and/or gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes).

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