Japchae (Korean Stir Fried Glass Noodles)

June 16, 2020

Down the street from my old apartment, on Macario Adriatico corner Remedios Street, is the Korean Palace Restaurant and where I first tasted Japchae, this delectable dish. Pollyanna Koh and her husband Albert were responsible for this introduction. I met Polly during the days when I would spend my extra time cross-stitching away because Polly owned a craft shop in Binondo. Polly remains a very good friend and now lives in China busy baking fantastic cakes.

This is so good to the last noodle!

Japchae (Korean Stir Fried Glass Noodles)

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By Marianne de Leon Serves: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 45 minutes Total Time: 1 hour

Japchae or Chapchae is a Korean stir fried glass noodles dish with plenty of vegetables seasoned with soy sauce, sesame oil, and garlic.


  • 200 grams dried glass noodles (sweet potato noodles) - tangmyon
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 150 grams beef sirloin, cut into very thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 150 grams (2 cups) baby spinach leaves or Chinese cabbage
  • ½ cup carrot - sliced julienne
  • 2 spring onions, cut into ½-inch lengths
  • 4 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems trimmed, cups sliced into strips
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Simmering Liquid for Noodles:
  • 1 cup water
  • 12 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 8 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Garnish:
  • 2 teaspoons roasted sesame seeds


Cook the noodles


Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a large saucepan.


Add the glass noodles and soak for 10 minutes.


Remove from hot water, and rinse in cold water.


Drain and cut into 8-inch length.


Place in cooking pan where the simmering liquid is and continue to simmer till the noodles are soft; about 10 minutes; stirring occasionally to prevent from sticking on bottom of pan.


Set aside till ready to mix with beef and vegetables.

Cook the rest


Heat the oil in a non-stick wok, over high heat and stir fry the garlic until golden brown and fragrant, about 30 seconds.


Add the beef, sesame oil, and 1 tablespoon of the soy sauce, and stir fry for 1 to 2 minutes until browned.


Add the vegetables and stir fry for 3 to 4 minutes until tender.


Add the glass noodles and toss well to combine, seasoning with the sugar, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and remaining soy sauce.


Cook for 2 - 3 minutes and remove from the heat.


Transfer to serving platter; sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve hot.

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