Thursday, 10 July 2014

Seoul Food | 닭갈비 Dalkgalbi

Sort of.

Dakgalbi is one of these great, hearty, all-in-one dishes. I discovered it via teaching my 4th grade classes, as one of the lessons on past tense involves the phrase "I ate dakgalbi". Every time it was mentioned, there was inevitably a chorus of "oohs" and "aahs" and "AAH DAKGALBI!!"

High praise indeed.

After some research, I found it's pretty much kids/student/peasant/drunkard food. Easy to make, easy to eat, and most importantly: cheap.

It's marinated chicken with cabbage, carrot, garlic, topokki, onion, and possibly sweet potato, cooked in a sweet and spicy sauce. You can eat it straight out of the pan, and if you're super hungry, you can then chuck in a load of rice and make spicy stir fried rice with the leftover sauce and bits of veg. Topokki (pictured below) is an interesting food that I've had a few times in school, it's basically a little rice cake sausage. Kind of like a VERY thick noodle, so if you've had udon before, it's like that in texture, but maybe 2-3x thicker. It sucks up all the flavour of whatever you put it in, similar to tofu but in a much more appetising way (for me, anyway).


But yes, it sounded incredible and I had to have some.

So here it is.


The "sort of" comes in the form of "we don't buy chicken very often because I hate deboning, breasts are expensive, and pork/beef is so much tastier". So this is a beef tuna* variant. But considering I followed a dakgalbi recipe exclusively up until the point where it said chicken, I won't bother renaming it.

I think this would be great in autumn or winter with a small group of friends, and I can also see why it's so popular as a snack when out drinking.

*we actually ate this two days in a row. Mainly because it was great, but also because I forgot to take a photo of the beef, so needed to recreate it for blogging purposes. Alas, we'd used the last of the beef. Tuna it is then. Not as good as chicken or beef in this situation, but it was still pretty good.



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