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message 1: by Nuri (last edited Aug 04, 2009 02:47AM) (new)

Nuri (nools) I just made this last night! Sujaebi is a hearty anchovy-daikon-based soup with chewy flour dumplings. It's known in Korea as a peasant dish which was often made during tough times when there was not enough rice. The broth is clean tasting, healthy, and versatile. This dish is a family favorite I learned to make with my grandmother while I was growing up. Today, I learned it's also easy on victims of hangovers.

Note: I'm having a little trouble with the ingredients because I've always just eye-balled everything. I'll switch from American to metric.... but Korean cooking is very forgiving, so exact amounts aren't always important.

Time to prepare: 1 hr 30 min
Serves 4 (or 3 hungry people)

Soup Base:
-1/2 large daikon radish (large is ~10" in length, 3-4" diameter)
-1 medium-sized brown onion
-1/5 cup dashima sheets (broken into smaller pieces)
-a dozen dried anchovies
-1 Korean zucchini (optional)
-1 medium-sized russet potato
-1/2 gallon of water? roughly.
-sea salt (optional)

-2 cups flour
-2/3 cups water

Seasoning Sauce:
-1/2 cup soy sauce
-1/2 cup sesame oil
-1 tablespoon Korean pepper flakes
-1 green onion, chopped into 5 mm pieces

1. Put the water to boil. Skin and chop daikon into roughly 1" tall disks. Clean onion and cut in half. Add the daikon, onion, dashima, and anchovies to the water and allow to boil on medium for 60 min.

2. While the broth boils, mix the flour and water. If you like more or fewer dumplings, you can make more or less dough, but it should be about 3:1 flour:water ratio. Knead well, cover, and allow to sit at room temperature until the broth is ready.

3. When the broth is almost done, clean and cut the Korean zucchini (hobak) and potato. Slice the potato into 1 cm thick coins. Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise, then into 1 cm thick half-moons. Set aside.

4. Once an hour has passed, strain or fish out the daikon/anchovies/dashima/onion, trying to save as much of the broth as possible. Add a couple pinches of salt. The broth should still be rather bland; the seasoning sauce will add more flavor at the end.

5. Set the broth to simmer. First add the potatoes. With hands lightly floured, quickly stretch pieces of the dough into medallions ~2" in diameter. They don't need to be perfect, but my grandmother always insisted: the thinner the better. Drop them into the broth and let them cook until they float, stirring occasionally so they don't clump together. Kids love to help with this part.

6. Once all the dough has been put in, add the zucchini and bring the whole thing to one more vigorous boil until the zucchini pieces turn slightly yellow. This should be 5 min, tops; careful not to overcook the hobak!

7. Mix together all the sauce ingredients. The sauce is optional. You could just add more salt in step 4, but I think the fresh green onion and hint of spiciness makes a big difference. The soy sauce and sesame oil complement the broth nicely. Serve the sauce on the side and allow diners to add to taste.

Having written it all out, it suddenly seems really complicated. If you don't have a good Asian grocer nearby, it might be tricky to find all the ingredients -- although the dashima can be left out (not optimal!), the daikon and anchovies are an absolute must. The hobak also adds a round, almost sweet flavor to the broth and should NOT be substituted with American zucchini (which is bitterer), if possible.

Definitely this soup is worth the trouble, though, and especially for gnocchi/dumpling lovers. The sujaebi has this wonderfully chewy texture. The soup is healthy and delicious, and no matter how much I make, there never seem to be any leftovers.

message 2: by Ali (new)

Ali | 130 comments Mod
This sounds yummy, Nools...I will have to make this for my friends and I as soon as it cools down here!

Thanks for posting!

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