Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cheese Ddukbokki

My ddukbokki/rabokki post is from 1.5 years ago. In that time, (I think) I've improved my photography - both skills and equipment - and posting style. So, though this recipe is practically the same as my first post (give or take a few details), it's a bit prettier, better organized, and the addition of the cheese is something new. That's why instead of making this a "What I Ate"-style post, this is a full-blown recipe post. Also, the old post is one of the most popular posts on my blog. Now people can come and look at this prettier version instead of that old, kind-of-hideous post.
Ingredients [serves 4]:
2 cups water (more or less depending on how saucy you like your dish)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
½ onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 scallion, greens and whites chopped separately
3 to 4 tablespoons hot pepper paste (gochujang; use more or less depending on spice tolerance)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 to 2 teaspoons hot pepper flakes (gochugaru; use more or less depending on spice tolerance)
3 tablespoons sugar
1 lb. thawed rice cakes (preferably tubes, not ovals, though ovals still work)
1 cup seafood (I used little octopi but shrimp, clams, mussels, calamari, etc. would be great)
½ cup shredded cheese (I used mozzarella but American cheese is more common)
1 hard boiled egg
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
Start by prepping your mise-en-place. Chop up the onion, the scallions, and mince the garlic. Boil an egg, peel it, and cut it in half. I've shared my egg boiling technique before but I'll summarize it quickly again: start your egg(s) in a pot of cold water. Place a lid on the pot and bring it to a boil. Take the pot off the heat and set a timer for 6 minutes for a soft yolk, 8 minutes for a semi-solid yolk, and 10 minutes for a fully cooked yolk.

Prep the seafood of your choice - or omit this altogether if you're not a fan of seafood. I chose baby octopi, which cook up quickly and are super tender.
In a large shallow pan, heat up some sesame oil over medium heat. Add in the onions, garlic, and the whites of the scallion. Saute for 2 minutes and then pour in 2 cups of water. Mix in the hot pepper paste, soy sauce, hot pepper flakes, and brown sugar. Bring to a boil.
Once the sauce is boiling, add in the rice cakes and cook until softened - about 4 minutes. Don't cook the rice cakes too long or they will become soggy. Once the rice cakes are softened, add in the seafood. Since most seafood doesn't take too long to cook, you want to add it in just at the end so that it cooks through perfectly without becoming chewy or tough.
Once the seafood is cooked through, remove the ddukbokki from the heat. Now it's garnish time. Top with a hard boiled egg, shredded cheese, scallion greens, and sesame seeds. Wait a few seconds for the cheese to melt.
And then serve. Marvel at the cheesy strings and enjoy.
Adding cheese to Korean food is kind of a weird trend but it's a delicious one. It brings a bit of salt and also another texture. I mean, who doesn't like cheese?
Here's the recipe page:

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