Looks like a soup day!

When the fog started drifting in this morning, I knew it was going to be a soup day. I’ve been in the mood for some Korean soup, so for lunch I decided to make ddok guk (or dduk guk): rice cake soup.

Ddok come in a variety of shapes, usually oblong and coin-shaped as shown here, or shaped into pieces that resemble pieces of chalk. I love their chewy texture.

Ddok guk is very easy to prepare and takes hardly any time at all, especially if you use pre-made stock seasonings. The ingredients are all pictured here: soy sauce, sesame oil, seasoned seaweed, clam stock and anchovy stock, a potato, an egg, a leek, and the dduk.

I like to sauté the leek and potato for a couple of minutes in the sesame oil and then add as much water as I need, depending on how many people I’m serving. Today, it’s just me, so I used about two cups of water.

In Korea, I’d just walk down the street to the open air market and pick up some fresh clams to throw in the soup. However, in Saskatchewan, it’s not quite as easy, though I have used frozen clams before with success. I picked up the stock powders in a Korean store, which helps give the soup an authentic flavour. Add 2 teaspoons of the clam stock and about a 1/4 teaspoon of the anchovy stock , or adjust to taste. Also, add a drop of soy sauce, but not enough that it significantly alters the colour. Once the soup returns to a boil, add the ddok and let simmer until softened, about five minutes.

The last step is to add the egg. Beat the egg slightly before pouring into the soup, and once in the soup, swirl around gently until it’s cooked. Garnish with some seaweed. I prefer to use Korean seasoned seaweed; this is the seaweed that’s roasted with sesame oil and sprinkled with salt — very different from Japanese seaweed or the stuff your sushi comes wrapped in. A vegetarian friend says it satisfies her craving for bacon. Just slice it up and sprinkle on top. 

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9 Comments

  1. Surprised you can find all your ingredients…guess you just have to know what your looking for. Looks tasty, don’t think I could get the kids to eat it. I am very interested in the seaweed you used.

  2. I love those little rice cakes! There is a sukiyaki joint near my house where you can get them to add to your hotpot. Delicious!

    if I don’t have any anchovy stock, would disloving an anchovy fillet in ths soup have the same effect?

    D

    • Boiling the anchovy fillet in water like you would to make a stock would likely give it a much richer flavour, so I’d go for it. You could add some dried seaweed at the same time for extra flavour, and then just strain the remaining broth after simmering it all for an hour or so for your soup base. Before I had picked up the clam and anchovy stock, I was using Japanese bonito flakes to approximate the slightly fishy, salty flavour that’s so good in these kinds of Korean soups. Let me know how the anchovy fillet works out if you try it!

  3. Sounds and looks fantastic! I must try to make this (though am awful cook). I do miss Korean food – I can get it here, but it’s not the same as just dashing out to the corner for something delicious!

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