Sprouts Side Dish (숙주 나물)

숙주 나물, sook-joo na-mul, are mung bean sprouts, not to be confused with 콩나물, kong na-mul, which are soybean sprouts. The two are quite similar in flavor and texture except that soy bean sprouts have a little yellow bean at the end of each sprout. Mung bean sprouts are quite nutritious and contain calcium and potassium and iron, as well as Vitamins A, B, C, and E, plenty of fiber, and are cholesterol-free. Soybean sprouts have a similar nutritional profile. And when you are shopping for either of these, look for sprouts that are nice and white from top to tail; browning is an indication that they are already starting to spoil. Don't smush or crush the sprouts when you're bagging your groceries and get them in the refrigerator as soon as you get home. The sprouts will probably start to get kind of slimy after four or five days, but they are still usable. However, if you haven't used the sprouts after about a week, they'll start to turn translucent, the thin tails will turn brown, and they'll start giving off a lot of liquid. At that point, you should just throw them out.

This recipe is a really easy Korean-style side dish, which is served at most Korean restaurants because it's easy but delicious. And actually, this type of seasoning is an easy way to make any vegetable taste Korean, which I'm sure I've mentioned before. Sesame oil, sesame seeds, some sort of pungent onion/garlicky flavor (in the form of scallions or garlic), and salt are the four ingredients that will transform sauteed carrots or blanched greens (spinach and watercress are two good examples) into a Korean-y side dish.

2 cups bean sprouts (mung or soy)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
1 scallion, chopped
sesame seeds (optional garnish)
Start by blanching the sprouts. Boil water, add sprouts, leave them for about one minute, and then drain and rinse in cold water immediately.

Next, squeeze handfuls of the sprouts to get out the excess moisture. Add salt, sesame oil, and scallions.
And then toss everything together.
Add a sprinkle of scallions for garnish and that's it. Super quick, easy, delicious, and healthy.
Here's the recipe page:


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