Make Park Saeroyi proud with your home-cooked soft tofu stew!
If you haven’t started watching Itaewon Class, we hate to tell you this, but you’re missing out! Apart from ogling at the ever-charming Park Seo Joon, who plays protagonist Park Saeroyi, the other star of the show is definitely the food, and more specifically - the soft tofu stew.
Food is an integral part of the series, not only because it is the industry wherein the characters are a part of, but more importantly, it demonstrates the experiences, obstacles and emotions the characters embark on throughout the show.
You’ll notice that the soft tofu stew (with a side of soju) dish makes a recurring appearance throughout the 16-episode series. If you’ve seen Itaewon Class, you can probably agree that it’s made you drool a little bit once or twice. Check out the recipe below and find out how you can make this at home!
How To Make Soft Tofu Stew (Sundubu-jjigae)
Soft tofu stew (sundubu-jjigae in Korean) uses silken tofu as its main ingredient - a local Korean delicacy. This is a popular dish among its locals and is often considered a comfort dish. Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to make, and once you get the hang of it, you’ll surely find yourself whipping it up whenever the craving kicks in!
Recipe Credit: Seonkyoung Longest of Asian At Home
What you’ll need:
1 tablespoon (increase depending on preferred level of spiciness) of Gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes) OR 2 tablespoons of Gochujang
1 tablespoon of sesame oil
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
¼ of White onion, diced
2 Green Onions (separate white and green parts)
3 anchovies in olive oil OR 1 ½ cup anchovy broth
4 oz. of your choice of beef or pork (optional)
½ cup of fermented kimchi, chopped into small pieces
1 ¼ cup of beef stock or anchovy broth
1 teaspoon of salt
12 oz. of silken tofu
1 egg (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
In a Korean clay pot (or dutch oven) if available, add in your 1 tablespoon of gochugaru and 1 tablespoon of sesame oil. If you do not have gochugaru, add in two to three tablespoons of gochujang depending on your preferred level of spiciness.
Add in your 3 fillets of anchovies (soaked in olive oil) into the pot. If you do not have anchovies, skip this step and add in anchovy broth later into the recipe (step 7)
Add in your 2 cloves of garlic, ¼ cup of diced white onion, and 2 green onions (only the white part), chopped.
Mix everything together and put on the stove at medium heat for about 5-7 minutes.
Once it starts to bubble a little bit, increase to medium to high heat and add in your 4 oz. of meat, cut into half-inch cubes/slices (beef or pork, up to you!) Cook the meat for 3-5 minutes until no longer pink. Adding meat is also optional, you can skip this step if you don’t intend to add meat into your sundubu-jjigae.
Add in your ½ cup of fermented kimchi (chopped into bite-sized pieces).
Add in 1 ¼ cup beef stock OR if you don’t have anchovies, use 1 ¼ cup anchovy stock instead.
Season the broth with 1 teaspoon of salt and bring soup to boil.
Add in 12 oz. of silken tofu; be careful not to break down the tofu too much! As it is very soft, it will easily melt into the soup. Break the tofu into minimum 2.5-inch cubes to still get those delicious tofu chunks.
Bring the soup to a boil; let boil for 2-3 minutes. Add in green onions on top (optional).
(Optional) While it’s boiling, crack an egg on top and season with a bit of salt and pepper to taste.
Serve while slightly boiling with a side of soju!