Have I ever told y’all how much I love Korean food? I mean it is a serious addiction of mine. In fact, I make it a point to cook Korean food at least once a week in our home. However, finding real food, paleo, Korean recipes is a struggle…until now! My friend Jean over at What Great Grandma Ate just wrote a new book called, Korean Paleo: 80 Bold-Flavored, Gluten- and Grain-Free Recipes! As soon as I saw this new cookbook, I had to have it and, thankfully, Jean is letting me give a sneak peek of one of the recipes from the cookbook, Gang Jeong (Sesame Candy).
Korean Paleo contains 80 recipes: most are traditional and authentic in flavor, and some are modernized, fusion, or healthified versions of popular Korean fast foods. You’ll find recipes that are crowd favorites like Bibimbap, Bulgogi, and Kimchi, as well as Korean barbecue items. You will also find dishes that you may have never heard before, but I encourage you to try them all because there’s only a small portion of the Korean cuisine that’s been popularized internationally. It’s such a rich and diverse cuisine.
Here’s a breakdown of the number of recipes within various dietary needs:
- Egg free: 53
- Nightshade free: 27
- Nut free: 70
- Whole30: 27
- AIP-optional (if you omit sesame seeds and black peppers, and replace sesame oil): 17
- Keto: 21
Now, for the delicious Paleo Sesame Candy recipe you must try…
Gang Jeong (Sesame Candy)
This crunchy sesame seed candy, commonly served over traditional holidays, is quite addicting because it’s deliciously nutty and not overly sweet. You can use already toasted sesame seeds, but I prefer to toast them before making the candy because the flavor is so much better that way. Make sure to work quickly when you roll out the sesame seed mixture. It’s doesn’t take long for it to harden into candy.
Serves: About 16-18
- 2 cups (300 g) of sesame seeds, white, black, or both
- 1” (2.5 cm) ginger, minced
- ½ (100g) cup coconut sugar
- ½ cup (120 ml) honey
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- If you are using raw sesame seeds, heat a large skillet over medium low heat. Add sesame seeds and toast them, stirring often, for 5-7 minutes until fragrant. If you are using toasted sesame seeds, start at the next step.
- Combine toasted sesame seeds and minced ginger in a bowl, mixing well.
- Prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Have another parchment paper of a similar size ready.
- Combine coconut sugar, honey, and sea salt in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat while constantly stirring. Once it comes to a full boil, let it cook for 2 minutes while stirring, then remove from heat. Immediately pour the sesame seeds and ginger into the hot syrup and stir. Pour and spread this mixture on the parchment lined baking sheet. Place the second parchment paper on top of the mixture. Use a rolling pin to flatten the candy into even thickness, about ¼ – ½ inch (6 to 12 mm).
- Remove the top piece of parchment paper, and let it cool for 10 minutes. Use a sharp knife to cut the Gang Jeong into rectangles or squares.
- Let it cool completely before storing in an airtight container. You can even freeze Gang Jeong for up to 3 months.