Ssamjang is sauce for “ssam” (make-your-own lettuce wrap filled with meat, vegetables and/or rice). It can also be used a vegetable dip or marinade for meats.
You can make a big batch of ssamjang and freeze it. It keeps very well frozen for at least a month and up to a few months if tightly sealed. Due to its saltiness, it does not freeze solid so it’s very easy to scoop out of a container even when it is frozen. Ssamjang will last a few days if kept in the refrigerator.
While you can purchase premade ssamjang, it’s never as good as homemade ones. To make ssamjang shelf stable, an acidifier has to be added which adds an unpleasant sour flavor. Also, premade ssamjang goes through a pasteurization process which alters fresh garlic and green onion flavors which are key to good ssamjang.
So make your own ssamjang. It’s so easy!
Buy ssamjang ingredients here.
- 1 pinch Sesame Seeds
- 1 unit Green Chili Pepper optional. Adds a nice spicy kick
- Combine all ingredients
- Some people add crushed nuts to balance out saltiness and add nutty flavor and texture.
- Not traditional but some restaurants add mayonnaise to enhance the flavors.