Korean Vegetable Porridge. The weather is cooling down in Seoul. I can feel the cool autumn winds walking up the subway steps. It’s during this transition from hot-to-cold when people start catching the flu. In Korea, when you fall sick or catch a stomach virus, we eat jook (rice porridge). It’s simple, filling and most importantly very easy on the stomach. The classic recipe is yachae jook – which is made with a few root veggies. Let me show you how:
Unlike risotto, jook does not include any butter or cheese. The flavor comes primarily from toasting the minced garlic in the sesame oil, as well as the natural flavors from the root veggies. In comparison to risotto, jook has a very muted flavor. That’s why jook restaurants usually provide a few banchans on the side like pickled veggies or small strips of braised beef (jangjorim). But the point of this dish is not flavor. It’s getting nutrition without the fear of further upsetting your stomach.
However, here are a few taste variables that you can play with:
- Anchovy-kelp broth: Replace the water with anchovy-kelp broth for a deeper taste. I purposely used water for speed and simplicity. But if you got the time, swap it out!
- Korean seasoned gim: The salty crispy seaweed blends beautifully with the rice. The more you use, the better it tastes!
Note: There are many different types of jook. We made a egg jook recipe earlier in the year. My other favorite (besides the classic veggie) is abalone juk. That one is so good! I will have to introduce it in the future.
Stay warm and stay funky! Daniel out 🕺
Korean Vegetable Porridge (Yachae Jook)
- Cooked Rice - 1 cup
- Water - 2 cups
- Carrot - small piece pointer-finger length
- Zucchini - small piece pointer-finger length
- Onion - 1/2 a whole
- Shiitake mushroom - 2 whole
- Sesame oil - 1 Tablespoon
- Minced garlic - 1 teaspoon !
- Salt - 1 teaspoon !
- Gim - 3-4 sheets garnish
- Sesame seeds - few shakes garnish
- Chop carrot, zucchini and onion into very small pieces. Cut Shiitake mushroom into small cubes as well.
- Take out a large pot. Put on medium heat. Place in sesame oil (1 Tablespoon) and minced garlic (1 teaspoon). Once the minced garlic starts to sizzle, turn off the heat to keep it from burning. Use a spatula and mix it around.
- Then add in the chopped onions and carrots. Turn the heat back up to a medium. Mix it around until the onions turn translucent.
- Once onions turns translucent, add in the cooked white rice (1 cup). Stir it around and mix it in evenly.
- Then pour 1 cup of water. Stir it around occasionally until most of the water has evaporated away. (Don't forget to stir!)
- Then add another cup of water. Once it comes back up to boil, add the zucchini and mushroom pieces in. Season with salt (1 teaspoon). Stir it around occasionally until most of the water has evaporated away.
- Use a ladle and scoop into a bowl. Garnish the jook with sesame seeds and pieces of gim. Also add a small drizzle of sesame oil as well. Bon Appetit!
- Replace water with anchovy-kelp broth for deeper flavor
- See video below for more detail