Boiled pork with cabbage – Bossam (보쌈)


A couple of weeks ago we were invited by KOCIS  (Korean culture and information center) to attend a cooking workshop at the Korea House (

This has been a great chance to experience a professional cooking class as well as to taste for the first time this dish.

The workshop was very busy and gathered many people from all over the world. My team was formed by one american guy, one canadian girl (both english teachers in Seoul) and an exchange student from Hong Kong. The atmosphere were really relaxed and while waiting for the class to start we had the chance to get to know each other a bit and discovered our common passion for cooking and for Korean food.


Bossam is a very popular dish and consists in boiled or roasted pork wrapped in vegetables leaves (Ssam means litterly “wrapping”) such as lettuce or sesame leaves and seasoned with soybean paste or red pepper paste.

The dish takes a few hours to prepare since the pork meat has to be washed and cleaned (you can leave the pork in cold water in the morning and cook it at lunch time). Find below the recipe and try to cook it yourself!

Be careful not to overcook the pork otherwise it will be too soft and it won’t be possible to slice it nicely. Unfortunately our team member in charge of it overlooked it and the pork came out too soft and when she was cutting it, the meat was cut in chunks (as you can see from the pictures below).

But let’s start cooking!

First this is to wash, clean and cook the pork (Suyuk).

Ingredients for Suyuk

  • 1.2 Kg Pork belly or neck meat
  • 2 liters Water
  • 2 TS Soybean paste
  • 20g Whole Cinnamon
  • 5 Bay Leaves

For the Seasoning:

  • 10g Ginger
  • 15g Whole Garlic Cloves
  • 5g Whole Black Pepper
  • 1 Green Onion

Instructions for Suyuk

  1. Soak the pork in cold water for about 4 hours to remove the blood
  2. Put the pork and seasoning and cook on medium heat in 2 liters water
  3. When water starts boiling add the other ingredients (Soybean paste, Cinnamon and Bay Leaves)
  4. Check every 10 minutes and not rember not to over cook the pork!

While cooking the pork you can start preparing Bossam Kimchi as follows

Ingredients for Bossam Kimchi

  • 1 head of Korean or Chinese Cabbage
  • 250g Radish, 125g Pear, 30g Mustard Leaf
  • 25g Green onion, 30g watercress, 25 Salted shrimps
  • 25g Salted Corvena (used for the sauce, you can replace it with 25g of fish sauce)
  • 80g Shrimps (can be replaced by young octupus)
  • For the garnish: 10g Brown Oak Mushrooms, 30g Chestnut, 12g Jujube, 2g Shred Red pepper, 1TS Pine nuts
  • For the seasoning: 4TS Ground red pepper, 2TS Minced Garlic, 1TS Minced Ginger, 1/2 Sugar, 1TS Salt

Instructions for Bossam Kimchi

  1. Steam or boil 12 outer leaves of cabbage. These will be used for the wrapping in the bowl.
  2. For the Corvena sauce, put 1 cup of Water and corvena heads and bones of salted corvena in the pot, boil for 5 minutes on medium heat, drain it on a strainer to make corvena liquid
  3. Slice Chestnuts, Mushrooms and Jujube
  4. In a big bowl, mix the shred cabbage and radish with ground pepper, salted small shrimps, seasoning and mix together throughly (wear a plastic gloves since it contains pepper powder). Add all the prepared stuff and mix. Add also Shrimps (de-veined and cut along the back but save some of the for decoration)
  5. Put 3-4 of previously steamed cabbage leave in a bowl for person (4 small bowls in our case. Fill each bowl with the mixture, add remaining shrimps and place the garnish on top. Roll the outer leaves up and wrap them tightly
  6. Take the kimchi wraps out of the bowl by putting it upside in your hand and then place it on a big plate. Place also the sliced bossam.
  7. Dish is ready to be eaten! Serve it with vegetables leaves and red pepper paste.