Japchae (잡채) referring to a ‘mixture of vegetables’ has everything in it; a subtle hint of sweetness; salty-savory flavor from the soy-sesame duo and to top it off a rich cultural significance to the Korean people. Glass-noodles (dangmyeon) bathed in a generous mish-mash of sesame oil and soy sauce, brought all together with an ensemble of fresh stir-fried vegetables and beef. What could possibly be any better than Japchae?
Imagine a Joseon emperor gathered round the most elaborate spread with his top honchos feasting on Japchae whilst rambling about the empires’ current state of affairs. King Gwanghae-gun was fortunate enough to be the first to try it out after his servant, Yi Chung created the dish in his royal kitchens. Given that the king appointed Yi as his secretary of treasury soon after, it’s clear that Yi Chung could cook a mean bowl of japchae. Due to its popularity as a regal dish, japchae be embraced by the common folk as a treat. Today, this noodle dish is featured in special occasions such as one’s first and sixtieth birthday, weddings and feasts.
The noodles themselves are soft on the outside but al dente on the inside. The vegetables give the visual ‘oomph’ by featuring colors that symbolise balance. Our japchae is made from locally-sourced thinly sliced beef; dangmyeon made from sweet potato starch and an assortment of mushrooms, carrots and spinach among other traditional vegetables that complement the dish. Our chefs then stir fry the ingredients, carefully following authentic Korean recipes, to produce a dish that is a feast to the senses. Japchae is a homage to the good things in life, and we think do a pretty darn good job at it.