Do You Know About Korean Jangdokdae?

When you travel through Korea, you’ll often come across these crocks. Today, I‘ve brought a very brief piece of common knowledge about jangdokdae.

What Is “Jang (장)”?

“장'” is a collective term in Korea referring to condiments such as soy sauce (간장), soybean paste
(된장), red pepper paste (고추장), and fermented bean paste (청국장). It is made by boiling beans to make meju (It refers to boiled beans crushed and formed into blocks that are dried to prepare condiments such as soy sauce), which is then dried and fermented. In South Korea, these are commonly used as seasonings to enhance the flavor of food.

What Is “Jangdokdae (장독대)”?

A jangdokdae is a crock used for storing fermented soybean paste, soy sauce, and red pepper paste. It is typically placed in a slightly elevated, sunny spot facing east for good sunlight exposure. To ensure proper drainage, it is constructed by stacking two to three layers of stones and covering them with flat stones. The largest crocks are used for soy sauce, medium-sized ones for soybean paste or meju (fermented soybean block), and smaller jars for red pepper paste or pickled vegetables.

The Process Of Making “Jang” Was Designated As An Intangible Cultural Heritage By The South Korean government

It has been recognized for its historical significance of fermenting “jang” for a long time since ancient times, its potential to be studied in various aspects of Korean cuisine and food culture, its association with Korean residential culture, seasonal customs, and traditional scientific elements, and its transmission across generations, engaging all Koreans directly and indirectly.

Other Intangible Cultural Heritages in Korea include royal cuisine of the Joseon Dynasty, kimchi making, and traditional alcoholic beverages.

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