3rd (and 4th) Cooking Adventure: Soondubu Jiggae (순두부 찌개)

Unlike my first and second adventure in cooking Korean food, I did not have someone there to show me exactly how to do it. Instead, I decided to look up a recipe for sundubu jiggae (순두부 지 깨).  It was one of the simplest recipes I could find, so I figured I would give it a go.

I substituted the meat and clams for shrimp. So after buying the missing ingredients, I decided to tackle the recipe on a Sunday night for dinner. This was my first time making it, so I guess it goes without saying that I made many mistakes.

First of all, I think I burned the garlic. The recipe said something about a minute with the vegetable oil and garlic until it gives off a pleasant aroma and is a golden brown. Well…my garlic dudes were a nice dark brown before I realized I needed to add the kimchi. The recipe then said to keep it in there until it was dry and the sizzling stopped…so…I think I waited until everything was almost black. (That’s how I knew it was dry. ^.^) I followed the rest of the directions perfectly (minus the beef and then I added the shrimp where it said to add the clams). I let the rice cooker handle the rice, with a little bit of sugar for taste.

note the very brown color and lots of blackened bits

Needless to say, when I sat down to eat my soup, I couldn’t stomach it after two bites. There was WAYYYY to much salt in it. After eating all of the shrimp, I threw out the rest (3-6 people my @$$…more like 6-9 people!). I ate some of the rice…but it was definitely (and strangely) sweet. (I guess not so sweet considering I added sugar to it.)

I did give it another attempt the very next night(!). I was not going give up! (hehe) This time, I completely skipped the salt, kept my heat at the lowest setting and didn’t burn anything, I added canned tuna instead of shrimp, and I cut all the ingredients by half. (Also, I did not add any sugar to the rice.) Although the soup was a still a bit salty (I blame it on the kimchi), it was delicious.  SCORE!

a better red color and the tofu wasn’t completely mush



  1. Anonymous · · Reply

    hey practice makes perfect also alec has to take the good with the bad LOL> Grandpa is looking for a recipe for good korean fried rice. Can you help him out. He ate this when he was stationed there. He thinks it was spelled Yakamachi. He loved it and ate it all the time. It would make him so happy if you could find a recipe for him. It had an egg over the top of it when served. Almost like a rice cake before the egg. Maybe Alec could ask his mom and come up with a recipe. Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year. God Bless Love u Gramma and Grandpa

    1. That name sounds more Japanese than Korean. The only thing I know for sure with rice and egg is bibimbap…but that’s just white rice, thin (or thinly sliced) vegetables, and a red bean paste. Throw the egg on top and stir the crap out of everything and enjoy. Actually, Hyun-oo and I don’t like it, but it’s a very popular dish in Korea. (They also throw an egg on top of ramen and let the heat of noodles and water cook the egg.)

  2. […] more things I’ve attempted to make (some successfully, some not) check out: one, two, three/four, five, six, and […]

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