Recipe: Sundubu jjigae (Spicy Soft Tofu Stew)

If you love Asian stews, you’re going to love this vegan take on Sundubu Jjigae by star home chef Karishma Mehta (a.k.a. @BowledOverbyKari).

For the unfamiliar, Sundubu Jjigae (pronounced SOON-DOO-BOO  JIG-AY) is a hot and spicy soft tofu stew from Korea.

While typically made with minced pork, this vegan version by Karishma is just as thrilling, starring two key ingredients – gochugaru (Korean spice mix) and soft silken tofu which has a creamy, melt-in-your-mouth texture. This soup is usually served in a dolsot bowl – a stone pot that keeps heat trapped and keeps the soup bubbling even after it’s taken off heat. However you can use the a regular pot to cook this soup too.

The base of the soup is intense in flavour, with the kick of spice from the gochugaru rendering this soup so comforting and perfect for the rainy weather lashing down on us this monsoon. Serve this soup with rice of your choice (short grain rice preferably).


Gochujaru

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp of sesame oil
  • 1 onion (sliced)
  • ½ cup spring onions (diced)
  • 1½ to 2 tbsp gochugaru (available from Foodhall or Urban Platter)
  • ½ cup of kimchi (optional; available from Bombucha)
  • ½ cup of kimchi water (optional)
  • 1 green zucchini (cut into circles)
  • 1 yellow zucchini (cut into circles)
  • 1 carrot (cut into circles)
  • 1 packet of enoki mushrooms or shimeji mushrooms
  • 1 bowl of button mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1 small broccoli (cut into pieces)
  • 3 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 1 pack of soft tofu (cut into cubes or if in tube cut and add directly ; available from Foodhall)
  • Salt to taste
  • Sesame seeds to garnish

Method:

  • Heat the dolsot bowl or a pot; and add the sesame oil. Slowly add the onion and garlic. Sauté for 3-5 minutes until the onion is soft and translucent
  • Add the kimchi, kimchi water and salt and sauté again for 2 minutes. Add in ½ tsp of gochugaru
  • Add in the mushrooms and cook for 3 minutes. Add in the zucchini, carrots and the broccoli and mix together.
  • Pour in 1 cup of vegetable stock or enough to cover the vegetables.
  • Add in the remaining gochugaru and cover the pot and let it boil for about 7-8 minutes.
  • Once boiling, add in the tofu and cook for 2-3 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed
  • Serve hot with steamed rice.

About Karishma Mehta:

Former lawyer turned home chef Karishma Mehta loves making colourful vegetarian and vegan bowls at home. Follow her culinary adventures and easy-to-follow recipes @BowledOverbyKari

Explore More Recipes By Karishma


We’d love to hear from you! Do let us know if you try this recipe – leave a comment below; and tag us in your delicious creations on Instagram @the_foodiediaries.

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