Today, we are working with one of my favorite Korean ingredients, Myeongran.
Myeongran is Salted Pollack Roe – and it’s very (very) popular here in Korea.
How’s it made?
Fisheries will set aside the roe caught from Alaska Pollock. It’s delicately washed in salt water to improve any impurities.
Then salted on a bamboo basket and left to drip-off excess moisture for 2-3 days.
Afterwards, the salted roe is slightly marinated with fine gochugaru and packaged for sale.
If you visit Korea, you’ll see fresh myeongran used on many foods – as a filling or spread on baked goods, filled into Korean rolled eggs (gyeran mari), boiled in spicy fish stew (al-tang) or added to pasta sauces.
Myeongran has been enjoyed in Korea since the Joseon Dynasty Era!
The center for production is Busan (so if you’re ever visit Korea, put it on your list of foods to try!)
Myeongran has become a mainstay food in Japan as well – when it first exported there from Busan in the early 1900s. The Japanese word for it is called ‘Mentaiko’.
How does it taste?
By itself, it has a salty, slightly fishy flavor – with a subtle popping texture.
There are certainly people who enjoy its natural taste (including myself).
But Katie prefers to mix it with sesame oil, gochugaru flakes and a handful of green onions.
Today, we’ll make this myeongran-jeot banchan – then combine it with a few other vegetables for a simple, light and nutrient-packed rice bowl.
This rice bowl has become our go-to meal before our bouldering sessions.
Plenty of protein and energy – without feeling bloated or overly full!
Cooking Notes for Myeongran Bap:
We used 2 large roe for our recipe. The amount of sesame oil and gochugaru can be reduced if your roe is not as large as ours.
For the coleslaw, we used a Korean black sesame dressing. If that’s hard to find, go with kewpie roasted sesame dressing (or similar).
For the avocado, all you need is salt, lime juice, cilantro and few cracks of black pepper!
Hope you enjoy ya’ll!
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- 2 Myeongran (Salted Pollack Roe) (Each about 60-70g)
- 2 stalks Green Onion
- 2 Tablespoons Toasted Sesame Oil
- 1 teaspoon(!) Gochugaru Flakes
- Few shakes Sesame Seeds
Sliced Avocado Topping
- ½ Ripe Avocado
- Few squeezes of Lime Juice
- Few sprinkles Salt
- Few cracks Black Pepper
- Small handful of Chopped Cilantro
Purple Cole Slaw
- Small section of Purple Cabbage
- 1 stalk Green Onion
- Few squeezes Korean Black Sesame Dressing (or other Creamy Sesame Dressing)
- 1 cup Cooked White Rice
- A drizzle Sesame Oil
- 1 Fried Egg (Optional)
Make Myeongran Topping
- Carefully use a knife to split the casing of 2 Myeongran. Then use a spoon and scoop out all of the roe into a bowl.
- Then, dice 2 stalks of green onion into thin pieces. Add it to the bowl of roe.
- Next, season the roe with: Sesame Oil (2 Tablespoons) and Gochugaru Flakes (1 teaspoon!). Give it a good mix.
- Then garnish with a few shakes of Sesame Seeds.
- Place into a Tupperware and store it in the refrigerator - we'll only need a spoonful for the bowl. (Will stay good for up to 1 week.)
Make Avocado Topping
- Split a ripe avocado in half. Use a spoon to scoop out each half. Then slice each of the halves into thin strips.
- Season the avocado slices with Lime Juice (Few Squeezes), Salt (2-3 large pinches), Black Pepper (few cracks) and Chopped Cilantro.
Make Purple Coleslaw
- Use a mandolin cutter and thinly slice a piece of purple cabbage.
- Next, thinly dice a stalk of green onion.
- Add both to a bowl and toss together with a Creamy Sesame Dressing.
Assemble Rice Bowl
- Place some rice onto a bowl.
- Drizzle sesame oil over the rice - just a small dash
- Then place each of the toppings - A large spoonful of the Myeongran, Avocado Slices & Purple Coleslaw - neatly on the bowl.
- Optional: Fry an egg and place on top as well
- Bon Appetit ya'll!