Soondae is Korean blood sausage and it’s easily one of my top 3 Korean street foods! It is pig intestine stuffed with glass noodles, pork blood, and glutinous rice. I know this may not sound appetizing to some people but it is absolutely one of my FAVORITE street foods to get in Korea!
Good soondae is really hard to find in the US. There aren’t that many restaurants that specialize in it, and the frozen stuff from the market is just not that good. For this reason, I am making soondae bokkeum which is blood sausage stir fried with veggies in a spicy sauce.
Soondae is typically served with stomach lining, liver, and some seasoned salt that has a tangy kick. It is often eaten with other street foods like tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes), odeng (fishcake soup), and twigim (tempura). But soondae can also be used as the main ingredient to a dish like soup or stir fry!
Whenever I visited Korea, I would always get SO excited when I saw my grandmother come home with a hot bag of soondae that she picked up from a street vendor. She knew how much I loved it, and she really enjoyed watching her Americanized granddaughter eat such a weird food. It’s been a few years since I’ve visited Korea and soondae is definitely one of the foods I miss most.
Korean blood sausage- you can find this in the freezer or meat section at a Korean supermarket! There are a few brands to choose from, honestly they are all very similar. If you have the option, go for the refrigerated ones and not the frozen ones. The taste and texture are a little better. Just make sure they come in a sealed plastic bag that can be boiled.
Veggies- carrots, cabbage, onion, green onion, and Korean chili pepper. These are pretty standard for stir fry’s, but feel free to add whatever veggies you like. When stir fried with the sauce, these veggies are SO good especially the cabbage!
Sauce- gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes), gochujang (Korean red pepper paste), soy sauce, oligodang, plum extract, minced garlic, sesame oil, and black pepper. The oligodang and plum extract are the sweetening ingredients in this sauce- if you don’t have these, you can just use honey or corn syrup.
Perilla leaves- these are totally optional but highly recommended. Perilla is an herb from the mint family but it is very difficult to describe the taste. I hated it when I was a child, but now it is absolutely one of my FAVORITE herbs.
Ways to eat soondae:
Seasoned salt- I grew up dipping soondae into a seasoned salt that is a bright orangey color. The salt is VERY strong so you only need a little bit. It’s so good with soondae!
Seasoned soybean paste- this is called ssamjang in Korean and it is also used for Korean bbq. It’s a fermented soybean paste mixed with gochujang, honey, sesame oil, garlic, and sometimes chopped peppers and onions. Ssamjang is good on everything!
Gochujang/vinegar mix– this is known as chojang in Korean, and it is also used as a dipping sauce for things like jeon (Korean pancakes) & hwe (sashimi).
Stir fry- you can stir fry the blood sausage with your favorite veggies and whip up any type of sauce- it will be amazing. I always prefer a spicy sauce, and I actually eat the veggies so I choose ones that I really enjoy. I have seen some soondae bokkeums with glass noodles too!
Soup- there are a few soup dishes that have soondae it- the main ones are soondae-guk (blood sausage soup) and haejang-guk which means hangover soup.
With alcohol- soondae bokkeum is great anju, which roughly translates to “bar food.” It’s food that goes well with alcohol. Soondae bokkeum is great with soju or makgeolli!
Try it my way
A couple years ago I went camping with my family and we forgot to bring the seasoned salt for our soondae. I always keep a bottle of Tajin in my bag and I thought to myself, “Why not?”
So we all tried the soondae with some Tajin on it and it is VERY similar to the Korean salt, but with a hint of Mexican flavor from the lime and chile. We all loved it and this is how I eat soondae at home now. I LOVE Tajin and it goes soooooo well with soondae! It’s the perfect fusion of my two cultures 🙂
Blood Sausage Stir Fry- 순대볶음 (Soondae Bokkeum)
- 12 oz Korean blood sausage wrapped in plastic
- 1 bunch perilla leaves
- 2 tbsp neutral oil for frying
- 4 oz cabbage
- 4 oz carrot
- 1 small onion
- 2 green onion
- 1 Korean pepper or jalapeno
Stir Fry Sauce
- 2 tbsp gochugaru Korean red pepper flakes
- 1 tbsp gochujang Korean red pepper paste
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp oligodang or honey, rice syrup, corn syrup
- 1 tbsp plum syrup or honey, rice syrup, corn syrup
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Mix the sauce ingredients together and set aside.
- Prepare the veggies: slice the onions, carrots, green onion, Korean pepper, and cabbage into bite sized pieces.
- remove the stems from the perilla leaves then roll it up and slice thin strips. Set aside.
- Boil the blood sausage, and do not remove the blood sausage from the plastic wrap! Boil the entire thing for 5 minutes if refrigerated and 8 minutes if frozen. Then take it out and let it rest on the counter for 5-10 minutes. Note: the instructions on the packet will probably tell you turn off the heat after 5 minutes and to leave the blood sausage in the water for another 5 minutes. Don't do that. It will be too mushy by the time we are done stir frying. My method works better for this dish.
- Remove the plastic wrap and cut the blood sausage into 1 inch pieces. Note: If you're familiar with soondae, you'll notice that the quality is not that great. The casing breaks easily and the filling can burst out- try your best to make clean slices but don't get too frustrated if you can't. It helps to cut them a little thicker.
- Stir fry the onions and carrots in some oil on medium low heat for 3-4 minutes. I lightly salt them in the pan but you don't have to.
- Add the cabbage and continue stir frying for a couple minutes over medium heat.Note: You can increase or decrease the amount of time spent on stir frying the vegetables depending on your preference. I like my veggies to be softened but still have a crunch to them. Stir fry longer if you prefer softer veggies.
- Add the soondae, green onion, Korean pepper, and sauce.
- Mix and stir fry for 1-2 minutes.
- Top with perilla leaf strips.