Myeongran Pasta. If Katie sees it on a menu, her mind is made up – she’ll have it! And she’s not alone… many young women in Korea really love myeongran pasta. So what exactly is it? Well, Myeongran is fresh pollock roe. When eaten raw and unseasoned, it doesn’t have any particular flavor. It’s eaten more for its crunchy (and popping) texture. When you reduce it in oil with garlic and peppers, it flavors the water to create an incredibly tasty and creamy sauce.
At the Korean market, you may see two types of myeongran:
The first type is unseasoned myeongran. It’s simply fresh roe that’s been frozen, with no marinade or seasoning.
The second type is seasoned myeongran – which is referred to as “myeongran-jeot (명란젓)”. It’s seasoned with gochugaru and other condiments. This roe is typically sold as a banchan – to be eaten alongside fresh rice.
For this pasta recipe, go with the first type. Once you find myeongran, this pasta comes together in minutes! Let us know how you like it 🙂
Dan-yul out! 🕺
- 1 piece of Myeongran (Pollock Roe)
- 6-8 cloves of Garlic
- 1 Thai Chili
- 1 serving size of Spaghetti
- 2.5 cups of Water
- 1 teaspoon of Kosher Salt
- Few squeezes of Lemon
- Few shakes of Black Pepper
Toppings (Optional but recommended)
- 1/2 piece of Myeongran (Pollock Roe)
- Few shakes of Seaweed Flakes
- Few shakes of Parmesean Cheese (Parmigiano-Reggiano)
- Thaw your myeongran until it becomes soft. Then use a knife and cut the sac down the middle. Use a spoon to scrape out the roe.
- Chop 6-8 cloves of garlic into thin slices.
- Then, chop your dried thai chili pepper into small pieces - don't throw away the seeds. We'll use those too.
- Put frying pan on a medium-low heat. Put some olive oil in. Mix it around.
- Once oil is hot, place garlic slices in. Add-in the chili pepper pieces as well. Cook both until the edges of the garlic pieces start to brown.
- Then pour in 2 cups of water. (Pour the water in quickly so the oil doesn't splatter too much). Increase the heat to a medium-high. Then add in your spaghetti noodles.
- Next, add in the roe. Use your chopstick or other utensil to thoroughly stir the roe into the water - so it doesn't clump-up into big pieces.
- Next, add 1 teaspoon of kosher salt (not dining salt!). Don't forget this step or your noodles will taste bland.
- Now, let it cook and reduce for 10-15 minutes - or until the broth reduces into a small amount.
- When the broth reduces to a small amount, give the noodle a taste. You'll notice that it's still undercooked. Place in some more water (1/2 cup). This should be just the right amount! Once again, let it reduce until most of the broth dissipates and the leftover sauce starts to turn creamy.
- Give a quick taste of the sauce and add more salt or black pepper - if necessary.
- If it tastes good, turn the heat off. Place-in a few squeezes of lemon - which will give it a nice lift! Then a few cracks of black pepper. Give it one final stir.
- Now, plate it into a beautiful bowl. Garnish with roe, seaweed flakes and Parmesan cheese. Bon Appetit!