Ganjang Gejang (게장, 게젓) is a traditional Korean dish that is made by marinating fresh raw crabs in soy sauce. It is a variety of jeotgal(salted fermented foods of Korean cuisine, made with various seafood like oysters, shrimp, fish or fish eggs). It was originally called gejang or gejeout, but people later started calling it Ganjang Gejang (Ganjang is a kind of Korean soy sauce) to differentiate it from a newer crab dish called yangnyeom gejang. I plan to write a post about that one in near future.
Known history of gejang goes as far back as the Joseon Dynasty(1392 – 1910). Making gejang was a way of marinating and preserving crabs then, and now it is a highly popular dish in Korea. It is mostly made using kkotge(꽃게), aka horse crab. Koreans usually prefer female crabs, although male crabs can be used too. Of course, since the dish will be consumed raw, the most important thing is to make sure the crabs are as fresh as they can be. Gejang is believed to be good for getting rid of the spring fever, as traditional Korean medicine says that the crab has a cold nature that can cool the consumer’s body temperature.
For those who will be travelling to Korea, the place to go to eat gejang would be the famous Singa-dong’s Ganjang Gejang Alley in Seoul. The food alley was famous for its agujjim(a Korean dish made using fish agwi) in the 80’s, but later became famous for ganjang gejang, thanks to the pro baseball players that have spread the word about how delicious it was made in the restaurants in the alley.
Don’t forget to check out the gallery and the recipes!