Tuesday, October 23, 2012


After tough weeks of midterms, we’ve finally earned fall break! While it is very exciting to go out exploring for exquisite restaurants (which sometimes gives me feeling of awakening when I find the one I really like), enjoying mom's homemade food is also joyful. Nothing can be more comforting than savoring home food that instantly brings you back into good relaxing times that I used to enjoy as a young kid. I was fortunate enough to visit home over the fall break. There, my mom made me one of my favorite Korean food, Ddukbokki, on Saturday afternoon, which immediately brought me feelings of comfort.

My all time favorite Korean snack, Ddukbokki, is likely very new to many people (unless you’ve been to Koreana - on 37th and Chestnut, right behind Chili’s- quite often). Ddukbokki is a popular snack amongst Koreans that serves very well as a good, filling snack. It originated as a food sold by street vendors. The major ingredients are cylindrical rice cakes, fish cakes, spicy Korean pepper paste, and sugar. From these basic ingredients, you can then make your own twist from here on, putting whatever you like or think would blend well to make your own style of Ddukbokki. For me, I like adding sliced onion, green onion, fish cake, boiled eggs and tempura in the cooking stage. Some other popular ingredients that people enjoy are ramen noodles. There also are many different types of tempura from sweet potato to pepper to squid (ultimately whatever you want to fry). This time, my mother made a very special Ddukbokki which I had tried for the first time. She made me Sea Food Ddukbokki with cylindrical rice cakes, sliced fish cakes, boiled eggs, onion, green onion, sugar, spicy Korean pepper paste, and on top of those, added squid and crab which made it really special. It was my first time trying Sea Food Ddukbokki and it was quite good compared to other ddukbokkis that I’ve eaten.

Ddukbokki is a very popular and I would say most beloved street food and snack in Korea. If you ever get a chance to visit Korea, I would highly recommend you trying many different ddukbokkis from different street vendors and find the one you most like. I can guarantee that you’ll never be able to forget the taste once you try the authentic ddukbokki from a street vendor in Korea.

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