I’m someone who would happily live in a tteokbokki world, eating tteokbokki three meals a day. I feel thankful for Korea for always coming up with different types of tteokbokki such as the Black Bean Tteokbokki, Soy Sauce Tteokbokki or the Rose tteokbokki mentioned in TMI Vol. 032. For those who don't know what I’m talking about, Tteokbokki is a Spicy Rice Cake dish, a popular Korean street food. The dish is widely known among Korean food lovers for its spicy yet sweet flavour and chewy texture. You may not have tried it, but would’ve seen it somewhere in K-dramas, movies, or TV shows at least once.
EARTH FOOD AND FIRE
Knowing my love for the dish, my friend recently sent me a new recipe video trending in Korea. Korea has already come up with thousands of unique Tteokbokki recipes, that now it was time for our neighbouring country to give us something new 🇻🇳 In Vietnam, Korean food is also a big trend and that led to Tteokbokki going huge in the country. Nonetheless, rice cakes are not the most common ingredient found in Vietnam, so they made this alternative of making rice cakes with rice papers! 🍚 Perhaps this can be a good idea for us in NZ as well, since rice papers are much more common to find in our local Countdowns, etc. You would have seen one of these Vietnamese rice papers in the supermarket, used to make summer rolls. Instead of rolling up fresh veggies and meat, you just roll a bunch of the paper together to make a new type of rice cake that’s on a new level of chewiness 🤤
Let’s make the rice cakes first! Wet three rice papers one by one in cold water and overlap them together. Push out any air bubbles and roll them up from one end to the other. Chop up the long cylinder of rice papers into bite-size pieces and you have your rice cakes 👏 Make another with three more rice papers, and even more, if you want. Put them aside, and here’s a different type of rice cakes for cheese lovers. Halve the sliced cheese and place them on a single wet rice paper. Roll it up like the others, and that’s now a cheese rice cake 🤤 You can do the same thing with any other ingredients you want in the tteokbokki, such as sausages or sliced ham.
Now for the tteokbokki sauce. Pour 2 cups of water into your pot to boil and add your chilli paste, sugar, and diced garlic. Chop up your onion, spring onion, and fish cakes and add to your boiling sauce. These fish cakes can be anything, but the usual would be the flattened one that you can find in Korean supermarkets, not the fish balls in the Chinese section. Once the fish cakes are softened, taste the broth and add a bit of beef seasoning and soy sauce to suit your taste. Now, the important part. 1 to 2 minutes before you take the tteokbokki off the stove, add your rice paper rice cakes. You only add them at the very end, because boiling rice paper for too long will make them all mushy and soggy. Mix everything together and you have yourself a Rice Paper Tteokbokki! (Recipe from Youtube ‘easy & simple cooking’)
Compared to the normal rice cakes, the ones made with rice paper are much more chewy and jelly-like, similar to the Chinese fen haozi noodles - an ingredient that trended in Korea last year! If you’re a tteokbokki-lover like me, yet found it hard to get Korean rice cakes nearby, try getting a Vietnamese rice paper and try this new type of tteokbokki at home 👍