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          Sundubu jjigae[Spicy Soft Tofu Stew]
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          • 요약설명 Simmering Stew in Earthenware

          A pot of Sundubu-jjigae (soft tofu stew) fresh off the stove is a mouth-watering sight. The bubbling sound of the stew, seemingly about to boil over the rim, stimulates the taste buds. A spoonful of Saeujeot (salted shrimp) is the perfect seasoning for a mild Sundubu-jjigae made from silky smooth Sundubu (soft tofu). As for the spicy version, nothing beats the taste of a raw egg cracked into the pot and eaten with bits of meat and seafood.

          Sundubu: The Best Source of Soybean Nutrients
          Sundubu starts out being made in the same manner as ordinary tofu, first boiling soymilk then coagulating it by adding a little brine. But it skips the later steps of draining and pressing the lumpy bean curds. The silky texture makes this lightly flavored delicacy easy to digest. The key to producing delicious sundubu lies in using the proper type of brine. In Chodang- Maeul, a village famous for its Sundubu, clean water from the East Sea is used. It all started when Chodang Heoyeop, a civil official of the mid-sixteenth-century Joseon government, was appointed as the magistrate of Gangneung. He discovered that the water from a spring in the front yard of his office tasted so good that he made tofu from the spring water and used sea water instead of brine. The name ‘Chodang’ was adopted from Heoyeop’s pen name. Chodang Sundubu calls for a labor-intensive process with only a small output, but long-standing restaurants still insist on preparing their own Sundubu in this traditional way. Sometimes, sundubu is served plain and hot with a soy sauce mixture on the side for seasoning, but it is also delicious when boiled together with sour kimchi or seafood such as oysters or clams.

          Praised by the New York Times
          An article in the New York Times featuring tofu dishes attracted great attention in Korea when it praised sundubu-jjigae as “the ideal winter meal.” Featuring a picture of sundubu-jjigae, the review of tofu restaurants in Manhattan included Book Chang Dong, Cho Dang Gol, Li Hua, and Seoul Garden. The article described sundubu-jjigae as “a hearty brew of spicy broth and silken tofu that is served in cast-iron bowls. Topped with scallion and nuggets of tender oxtail or crisp kimchi, it's the ideal winter meal.”

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