Sunday, 23 October 2011

Korean Kimchi Stew

I first came across Soondoobu Jiggae (or, soft tofu stew to me and you) at Koba, on Charlotte Place. A bubbling stew in a hot stone pot, it as packed with little clams, silky soft tofu and the punchy heat of kimchi. Further exploration with my chopsticks revealed a perfectly poached egg in the broth.

I've been fairly obsessed with it ever since, and I even purchased myself a dolsot (above, the stone pot you cook the stew in). Now, whenever I feel under the weather COUGH hungover COUGH my thoughts turn to kimchi stew. It's the spiciness with the comfort of the accompanying rice and that egg spilling its golden yolk into the soup, enriching further mouthfuls - it has magical healing properties.

I've made this with various types of kimchi - ponytail radish works well, but cabbage kimchi is more readily available. Sadly I can't often find clams so more often than not I leave them out and instead I add whatever random vegetables I have in the fridge.

Kimchi Stew

Serves 1

3 tbsp kimchi + 1 tbsp kimchi juice
1 small red chilli (optional if you're a chilli head)
2 tsp Korean chilli paste (gochujang) - you can get this at your local Asian supermarket
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp light soy sauce
200gr soft tofu
1 stalk of spring onion
1 egg

For the broth:
3" square piece of kombu
4 dried anchovies
300mls water
A small handful of bonito flakes

(Or substitute the above with ready made dashi stock)

Heat the water with the kombu and dried anchovies in until it is simmering. Then take off the heat and add the bonito flakes. Leave for 15 minutes and then strain.

Heat the sesame oil in a dolsot or a saucepan. Fry the minced garlic in the oil for a few minutes. Add the chilli paste and the kimchi, then add the dashi broth and soy sauce. Simmer for 25 minutes, then add the tofu and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Break an egg into the stew and simmer for another 3 minutes - if you're using a stone pot you can take this off the heat now. Top with the spring onion. Put it on a chopping board / heat proof mat. Serve with a bowl of steamed rice.


PDH said...

That looks bloody amazing. Will definitely give this a go!

Anonymous said...

I like adding udon (sanuki is best) to the kimchi soup - delicious!

aforkfulofspaghetti said...

Everything about this screams - ADDICTIVE. But in a good way. Great recipe, Lizzie. PS - hope you feel better soon, too

S said...

hope you feel better. love all your spicy recipes- and now youve gone and blogged about kimchi- a weakness of mine. a Japanese place close to our place serves a gorgeous kimchi soup (the owner is Korean) i am sure yours competes with that one- in fact yours sounds much, much better. x s

Sharmila said...

I adore this stuff. And the name makes me laugh (juvenile much?).

Also liking the comment about adding in some udon - I can imagine that would slurping up that spicy broth with some slippery noodles would be ace.

Hollow Legs said...

Pavel - please do, and let me know how it goes!

Chasing bawa - Oooh I love udon, I'll give that a go.

Forkful - addictive is definite the word for it. thanks!

Shayma - we have a lot of japanese / korean hybrids here too. Thanks! blush x

Sharmila - I am scared of spicy flickage. Must be clothed in all black...!

Su-Lin said...

Crap, now I need kimchi and there's none in my fridge.

Nora said...

Oooh, that looks lovely. I'm becoming more and more obsessed with Korean food, and this is crying out to be made! Where did you get the pot from? Was it expensive? Very tempted...

mycookinghut said...

Looks like a real comfort food!