Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sundubu Jjigae Sniffles

I used to be an exchange student in South Korea.  One of the most difficult thing that I had to adjust over there was eating their SPICY food.  The pre-Korea Candie was the lamest, non-spicy food eater, ever.  I remember my first week in Korea, I ate McDonald's for a week, denting my student pocket because it was so expensive.  I remember I had an episode of home sickness and was complaining to my mom how everything in Korea is red because they're all spicy!  I even hated Kimchi.

Fast forward 3 months later, I started speaking novice Korean and realized I loved Korean food!  The lame pre-Korea Candie is now spicy hot haha.  I could eat hot rice with just kimchi, and it would be a meal.  Especially loved the restaurant across the university where they served Kamja Tang (Potato Soup), Sam Gyop Sal (grilled bacon strips) were weekly staples with Soju!  I was basically a Korean (I already look the part anyway)! haha

A few years ago my sisters and I got a great deal and bought cheap tickets to Korea, it was my first time to go back after my exchange student program.  Anyway, I'm blabbing too much about me so I'm gonna get to the food.  haha.  The trip with my sisters to Korea was for sure a food trip!  We love Korean food and we LOVED Sundubu Jjigae!

We've been searching everywhere in Manila for Sundubu Jjigae, but Kimchi Jjigae is more popular here, and then I found Maangchi, wherelse? Youtube.

You'll need the ff:

Soup Base:

12 pcs dried anchovies -- or 1 tbsp of anchovy powder
1/3 cup of kelp

half onion
5 cloves of garlic
3 shiitake mushrooms
5 cups of water (1 cup of which is soup from clam)

For Sundubu Jjigae:

100 grams of beef
1 cup of clams
3 pcs shrimp
2 pcs green onions
1 pc green chili pepper
1/4 cup of Red Pepper Powder
2 tubes of soon du bu
2 tbsp of fish sauce
2 pcs eggs

*all Korean stuff can be found in your local Korean store or Nice Mart.

The most important part of any soup is the soup base.  Basically, it's seafood.  Koreans use alot of clams.  I like the flavor of clams, so what I did was to boil the clean clams in 2 cups of water until cooked, put a bit of ginger in while boiling to remove the fishy smell.  Measure the clam soup and add more water to make 5 cups.  Add in the all soup base ingredients and boil for about 20 minutes.

Prepare the stone pot, put it over the fire and put some oil in it, stir fry a bit of the beef for flavor and remove it again (I do this so that the beef wouldn't be too tough), I leave a piece or 2 of beef for flavor.  Then, get the boiled mushroom in soup then chop them up in medium sized pieces and stir fry.  Put about 1/4 cup of Red Chili Powder and put it in the pot then mix

Then add about 2 cups of the soup base or about 3/4 the way full then boil, try the soup if it's spicy enough for you, you can adjust the spiciness by adding more chili pepper powder.  The powder really isn't as fierce as it looks, it's actually a bit sour and a little spicy, so adjust from putting in 2tbsp to about 5tbsp to 1/4 cup -- but then again, you'll only try this recipe if you life spicy food, so add more! 

By this time, you can add in the fish sauce for flavor.  Cut the tofu packaging in half and just put all 2 pcs in then break it apart with a spoon lightly.  Do not stir it vigorously because you still want solid pieces of tofu when you eat.  Boil some more until the some thickens a bit, throw in the chopped green big chili.  At the last minute, you put in the cooked clams and beef into the soup, then mix, finally, crack in 2 eggs into the soup and boil.  Serve with tissue for the sniffles haha!

Chal Mogesumnida! :)

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