Thursday, March 11, 2010

Recipe: Chuncheon dakkalbi

I talk about Chuncheon and dakkalbi (Chuncheon-style spicy stir-fried chicken) both in videos and on this blog, yet I've never posted my recipe for this iconic Chuncheon dish. When I lived in Chuncheon, I visited Dakkalbi Street at least once a month to savor this wonderful dish. There were more than a dozen restaurants in this small area, making their own variations on this classic dish.  It's an easy dish to make but most Koreans would rather eat it in a restaurant rather than at home.

Here's what you need to do to make yourself some authentic Chuncheon-style dakkalbi.
Dakkalbi sauce

4 tbsp. gochujang
2 tbsp. Korean gochugaru or hot paprika (or you can use 1 tbsp. gochugaru and 1 tbsp. Korean curry powder)
1 tbsp. minced garlic
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. sesame seed oil
1 tsp. stevia
1 tsp. honey or agave syrup
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 tbsp. sesame seeds

Ingredients

1/2 cup dakkalbi sauce
3 tbsp. grapeseed oil
1 lb. chicken breast or thigh
3 spring onions, cuts into 1 inch pieces
12 oz. garae tteok (long Korean rice noodles)
1 sweet potato, cut into french fries
1/4 head cabbage, chopped

Instructions
  1. Chop chicken into bite size pieces.
  2. Mix the sauce ingredients together and marinade the chicken in the sauce for at least an hour.
  3. Heat up your cast iron skillet or wok with the oil.
  4. Put the chicken in first and give it a good stir for a minute. Add the veggies and keep cooking for about five to 10 minutes until the veggies and chicken are cooked.

Sweet potatoes might seem an ill-suited choice of vegetable for this meal. Koreans have been cultivating potatoes for nearly 200 years. In Korea's mountainous provinces, like Gangwon-do, where Chuncheon is located, sweet potatoes are a very popular dish.

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