I recently started cooking Korean food. To be honest, this is a whole new world for me in the realm of cooking, just like Hawaiian food is. Japanese food I learned from my host mothers, Chinese food I learned working in a Chinese restaurant, Filipino food I learned from my best friend, but Korean food I’ve only seen made in dramas. As a result, cooking it on my own is 100% an experiment. Luckily, I have the trusty internet.
Tteokbokki (the romanji spelling is debatable) is the Korean spicy rice cake dish so commonly seen in K-dramas. It looks like tubes of mozzarella in tomato sauce, but the flavors are distinctly Korean. This is a classic Korean dish and is great on those chilly nights of fall and winter. I got this recipe from a blog called Maangchi. I highly recommend watching her videos if you want to try this recipe.
I realize I put this recipe as “Vegetarian”. To be honest, the original is not, but it is completely possible to use vegetable broth instead of the anchovy broth, so I marked this as a vegetarian recipe. Alright, on to the recipe!
1 lb Korean rice cakes (these are different from Japanese rice cake; so if you are buying these at the grocery, look for tube-shaped rice cake with Korean on the package)
4 cups water
7 large dried anchovy, head and intestines removed
6×8 in piece of kelp
1/3 cup red pepper paste (gochujang)
1 tbsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp sugar
3 green onions, cut into 3 in long pieces
Note: this recipe is VERY spicy. If you are sensitive to spice, I highly recommend cutting down the amount of red pepper paste you use. DO NOT cut out the red pepper flakes. I tried this, but I lost the depth of flavor Korean red pepper flakes create. As a result, I recommend decreasing your amount of gochujang, but keeping the sugar and red pepper flakes the same. Perhaps cut the gochujang to 1/4 cup and try it…?
Boil the anchovies, kelp, and water in a shallow pan for 15 minutes over medium-high heat.
Combine the red pepper paste, red pepper flakes, and sugar in a bowl, then set aside.
Remove the anchovies and kelp from the water, make sure you get everything; you don’t want bits of anchovy in your rice cakes.
Add the rice cake, paste mixture, and green onion to the stock. Bring this to a boil, stirring gently.
Boil for 10-15 minutes, continually stirring, until the rice cake becomes soft and the sauce thickens.
Remove from heat and serve hot. You don’t want these to become cold, they really just aren’t the same.
Again, I highly recommend reading Maangchi’s original recipe and watching her video. The video does a great job showing the cooking process and is very easy to follow.
I hope you enjoy cooking this as much as I did. We will return to the week of crock pots in the next post 🙂