Dak Dori Tang - Kitchen Experiences of a Student Blog at Allrecipes.com - 177638

Kitchen Experiences of a Student

Dak Dori Tang 
May 29, 2010 1:02 pm 
Updated: May 29, 2010 5:43 pm
My boyfriend’s mom used to be a home-stay host for foreign exchange students coming to Canada. Most of these guests are from Asia (though they’ve also hosted people from Switzerland, France, Mexico, and Germany). The students always love to cook for their hosts, and it’s a tradition that on their last night in the city they throw a dinner party with traditional meals from their country. They’ve had several students from Korea who have taught my BF’s family (and myself on occasion!) dishes, and my boyfriend has since scoured Chinatown and the Asian supermarkets we have here for ingredients for these meals. Yesterday he was going to make Dak Dori Tang, a spicy Korean stew made with chicken, but due to the terrible weather we’ve been having he couldn’t ride his motorcycle to work and had to take the bus, which means he doesn’t get home until about quarter to 6 – so he asked me to make it! I’ve only ever seen snippets of the process, so I did some research and looked at a bunch of recipes as well as the notes he scribbled down from the student he learned it from. Here’s what I did, based on his notes and this website....

A picture of the ingredients I used… I actually used one extra carrot and a small onion and a large leek, which I forgot to get out for this picture. That little red tub is gochujang, which we found at an Asian supermarket – I had to look up what it is online because there’s no English on the package. According to Wikipedia, “Gochujang's primary ingredients are red chili powder, glutinous rice powder mixed with powdered fermented soybeans, and salt.” Whatever it is, it’s delicious – spicy and full of flavour. It has a sticky strange texture, so measuring it is kind of a pain – I had to use a spatula to get it out of the measuring spoon, and the edge of a knife to get it off the spatula. There’s also soy sauce (the lite kind!), sesame oil, ginger, garlic, onions, carrots, potatoes, and though no recipe I saw online called for it, my boyfriend has always made it with leeks.

The Ingredients...
- chicken (we used 2 really big boneless/skinless breasts) cut into 1 inch cubes
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2-3 medium potatoes, cut into 1” chunks
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and thickly sliced
- 1 small onion, cut into smallish wedges
- spicy peppers – whichever kind fits your spice level. I used 1 habanero pepper (and the soup made my eyes water…)
- 1 large leek, dark green bits trimmed off and the rest thinly sliced in rings
- 1/4 cup soy sauce (we use reduced sodium)
- 3 tsp sesame oil (or even less – don’t go overboard, this stuff has a really strong flavour)
- 2-3 tbsp gochujang or other Asian spice paste (depending on your spice tolerance)
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 3 tsp brown sugar
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tbsp minced or fresh-ground ginger
- 4 cups water or chicken broth, or enough to cover all veggies and chicken pieces (even more if you like thinner stew)

First make the flavour paste – mix together the soy sauce, sesame oil,gochujang, chili powder, brown sugar, garlic, and ginger in a medium bowl.

Flavour paste ingredients before mixing…

And after mixing.

The How To...
In a large soup pot over medium high heat, cook chicken in veggie oil until browned and no longer pink. Remove chicken from pot into the bowl with the spice paste, stir well, and marinate the cooked chicken for at least 5 minutes.

Put a little more vegetable oil in the pot. Add carrots and potatoes and cook for about 10 minutes to soften slightly (I actually added one more clove of garlic to the cooking veggies, but I’m crazy about garlic). Add the finely chopped chili pepper and stir for about one more minute. Pour the water in and add the chicken back with all the marinade – stir well to combine water with flavour paste. Bring to a boil on about medium high heat, add the leeks, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

I accidently added too much leek... normally it's not this leeky. Oh well, now I know for next time!

This stew is usually served with white sticky rice. I read that the way most Korean families serve this is to have the stew in a family bowl in the middle of the table, and individual bowls of rice – each person scoops some stew onto their rice and continues to add stew until they have used up all the rice. We serve it the other way around – individual bowls of dak dori tang with a communal bowl - scoop some rice onto your bowl and when it’s all gone, add more! The rice is especially important for those who can’t handle intense spice, like me – it dilutes it a bit.

This is a deliciously spicy stew that is fun to make!

(Sorry for the photos being so small - first time I've put them right in the blog, I'm still kind of figuring it out!)
Dak Dori Tang flavour paste
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Dak Dori Tang ingredients
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Dak Dori Tang flavour paste
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Dak Dori Tang
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Dak Dori Tang with white sticky rice
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May 29, 2010 1:13 pm
That looks delicious! I'd have to go with a seeded deveined jalpeno though since we are heat wimps... How do you make sticky rice?
May 29, 2010 1:15 pm
We just use Rooster Brand long grain white sweet rice and cook it in our rice cooker according to white rice directions. This soup and sushi are really the only things that rice is good for... the texture is kind of gluey. My BF loves it on everything, I am much more picky! Thanks for the comment! You can also leave out the peppers altogether, the gochujang and chili powder give it some spice.
May 29, 2010 1:21 pm
That is a great blog! Looks like you had a lot of fun cooking that up. Thanks for allowing us to live vicariously through the process. I don't think you can get the pictures any bigger than that, and they are fine looking anyway. We can click on them to enlarge. BTW, what are some of your favorite ethnic or specialty markets in Calgary? Anything goes. I don't make it in to the city that often, so I don't really know what's out there. One of these days I'm going to grab a friend and spend an entire day just shopping the specialty food shops in the city.
May 29, 2010 3:43 pm
Wow...that looks really good. Are the carrots essential to making it authentic?
May 29, 2010 5:25 pm
We got the Gochujang at TnT market, there's one in Franklin mall - they have a great selection of Asian spices and other foods for really cheap. They have inexpensive produce there as well, and in case you're ever lookig for chicken feet - they have bins of them lol. We also live practically across the street from Chinatown, so we spend lots of time wandering through there. I think next time I'll write a blog about Korean Glass Noodles - we found a package of those in Chinatown a couple months ago for 99 cents. They're called sweet potato noodles in some places. My BF's mom also shops at the Italian market on 58th avenue, close to Blackfoot Trail - you can get day-old amazing Italian bread there for 40 cents a loaf. Hope that helps, CC! Lynna, every recipe I saw has the carrots in it, but I kind of get the impression it's a "fridge-cleaning" recipe - throw in any veggies you have! I think it would be great with cauliflower.
May 29, 2010 5:43 pm
Thanks, PD! Once upon a time I too lived, and worked, in the heart of the city. Wow, those were fun times :D I loved it, but love being on the acreage now. I just envy you having everything right at your doorstep! Would love to see a blog on the glass noodles. Sounds very interesting.
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About Me
I'm a 22 year old novice cook - I live with my boyfriend in a small apartment with a teeny kitchen. Right now I'm trying to eat healthier and cut some meat out of my diet - I'm writing a blog about cooking my way through a vegetarian cookbook! I love trying new recipes, and adjusting them to suit my tastes.
My favorite things to cook
I love BBQing, making casseroles, and putting together any kind of soup. I'm also trying to get into baking - my kitchen is tiny so I have to use simple recipes, but I love making muffins and cookies to share.
My favorite family cooking traditions
When I was little my mom taught me how to make brown sugar syrup for our homemade pancakes - everytime she made pancakes at home, I would make the sauce to go with them.
My cooking triumphs
Lasagna Day - My first ever dinner party in my apartment, I made spinach salad, stuffed mushrooms, lasagna from scratch, and apple crisp. It was a hit with my friends, I got so many compliments!
My cooking tragedies
When I was in high school I decided to make some cinnamon buns, but the only recipe I could find was a huge batch, so I cut it in half. However, when I went to mix the ingredients, I found myself adding the full amount of some but only half of others, and I couldn't remember how much of each I'd already done. I tried cooking them anyways, but they were terrible!
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