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Table Manners






The soybean, an ingredient of soybean sauce, consists of 40% protein, 20% soluble nitrogen-free extract, 14% fermentable sugar, 10% water, 5.5% ash, and 5.5% vitamins.

Traditional Korean soybean sauce is made from soybeans only. The soluble carbohydrates contained in soybeans, such as sucrose, stachyose, and raffinose, are used by micro-organisms such as bacillus subtilis, lactic acid germs, enzymes, and fungi while the soybeans are fermented. Therefore, little carbohydrates remain in finished meju (fermented soybeans).

The soybean is drawing attention as one of the best health foods. The primary ingredient of soybean paste, the soybean, is so rich in protein and fat that some call it a garden meat. It is quite functional as well. In particular, patients suffering from cardiac disorder can safely eat soybeans because they contain plenty of vegetable protein free of cholesterol.

Because of a low content of fermentable carbohydrates, this fermented liquid diluted with brine contains 0.7% lactic acid, but alcoholic fermentation rarely occurs. Protein contained in soybeans is decomposed by protease and peptidase, micro-organisms in fermented soybeans, so the contents of peptide nitrogen and amino nitrogen are very high. The content of glutamic acid is particularly high. Recently, the Ministry of Science and Technology funded a "Study of the Mass Production of Traditional Korean Soybean Sauce," a joint task of the Leading Technology Development Project. It has now become possible to make traditional soybean sauce with superior aroma and taste, containing 1.0-1.2% nitrogen and 1% alcohol as a result of complementing the alcoholic fermentation process of soybean sauce.