Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Korean Soft Tofu Soup (순두부찌개)

I received an email a couple weeks back from one of my readers requesting the Korean soon tofu jigae. So here it is Doreen, this is for you. Thanks for being so patient.

This soup appears more spicy than it actually is. It's up to you as to how spicy you really want it. I love this soup. It's healthy, hearty and perfect for the cold winter days we've been having. This soup is usually available at Korean restaurants and sometimes, if you're lucky, some restaurants specialize in just soon tofu soups. And this is where you'll find the most variety. Believe it or not, my love ate an entire bowl with some rice. He said,"this is good soup mommy." I love that kid.

Made with an anchovy, kelp and shiitake mushroom broth, soon tofu can be vegetarian or the addition of beef can also be made, which makes for a more flavorful soup. I added short rib beef which has a higher fat content and adds more flavor to the soup. You can however use any beef you have available.

Printable Recipe
Anchovy, Kelp, Shiitake Broth
4 Cups Water
1/4 Cup Dried Anchovies, head and guts removed
2-3 Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
*This will yield about 2-1/2 cups of broth

Soon Tofu Soup
1 tbsp Grape Seed Oil
1/2 Cup Chopped Beef
1-1/2 tbsp Minced Garlic
1/2 Cup Diced Onions
2 tbsp Red Pepper Flakes (add more if you want a spicier soup)
1 Cup Frozen or Fresh Seafood (shrimps, mussels, squid)
1/2 Cup Sliced Zucchini, cut into quarters
Shiitake Mushrooms from the broth chopped
2-3 Scallions, chopped
1 Korean Pepper, sliced
1 Package of Soft Soon Tofu
Salt & Pepper to taste

1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Add the anchovies, kelp and shiitake mushrooms. Reduce heat to medium and boil for 20 minutes. Pour the soup through a fine mesh sieve and set aside.

2. Heat up a medium pot and add the grape seed oil and then the beef and saute. Add the minced garlic and onions and saute until beef appears cooked through. Then add the red pepper flakes and saute to combine.

3. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Add the seafood, zucchini and shiitake mushrooms. Then add the soft tofu using a spoon to scoop the tofu out from the packaging. Top with the sliced peppers and scallions and simmer for about 10 minutes. Lastly, add the egg and allow to cook through a bit. Leaving the yolk runny which will cook a bit more in the soup.

Serve hot with rice. This is a meal in it of itself. I hope you'll try it. Enjoy!

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21 Reactions to this post

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  1. Jeanette said... February 8, 2011 at 6:02 PM

    This look perfect for a cold winter day! I love soft tofu and a spicy broth to go with it.

  2. Anonymous said... February 8, 2011 at 6:24 PM

    Wow, this tofu soup looks so tasty, love the ingredients in it...and is so comforting...specially for a cold evening :-)

  3. Juliana said... February 8, 2011 at 6:26 PM

    Lisa, what a lovely tofu soup...love the idea of beef and seafood all together, very comforting :-)

  4. Lisa said... February 8, 2011 at 6:27 PM

    I love this dish. Your family is so lucky that you know how to make all these delicious Korean foods.

  5. Jean said... February 8, 2011 at 6:57 PM

    This post is so timely. There's a place near our home called Tofu House that we've been meaning to try (and missed last week) and I believe they have a big soup offering. Now I know what to look for when we finally visit. This soup would really hit the spot--savory, brothy, tofu-y and full of Asian hearty goodness. I was going to make asparagus soup out of leftovers tonight but now I want this.

  6. Hyosun Ro said... February 8, 2011 at 8:34 PM

    Lisa - Funny we just had sundubu jjigae for dinner. Just a quick and dirty version. Only with oyster and zucchini. Yours is definitely a gourmet version and looks great.

  7. Anonymous said... February 8, 2011 at 11:19 PM

    Thank you! Can't wait to try it. How much kelp should we use and is there a particular kind? Thanks.

  8. Sommer J said... February 9, 2011 at 1:52 AM

    *drool* this is most certainly something I would loooove!! I can almost smell the lovely aromas, mmmmmm.

  9. ~Lisa~ said... February 9, 2011 at 2:29 PM

    @ Anonymous, You can use any kind of kelp. I used the kind of kelp that I normally make seaweed soup with because thats what I had on hand. And I would use about a 3 inch by 6 inch sheet of kelp. Hope this helps (=

  10. Mariko said... February 9, 2011 at 10:15 PM

    I have NEVER seen tofu in a package like that! I am so intrigued now, though. I'll go to the Korean store this weekend and get it. I love this soup when I go out. Never thought it would be easy to make.

  11. nithya at hungrydesi said... February 12, 2011 at 10:16 AM

    Just found your blog - this looks delicious! I'll definitely try it out for my family with tofu.

  12. Fun and Fearless in Beantown said... February 28, 2011 at 8:14 AM

    This looks perfect for a sleeting day like today. I also think it is great that you respond to reader requests!

  13. minneville said... February 28, 2011 at 11:11 AM

    this is my favorite korean dish! thanks for laying it out so clearly! i'm going to try it.

  14. Rachel said... March 1, 2011 at 9:13 PM

    My mouth is watering. My motto when it comes to tofu soup is "the redder, the better". :) I love it super spicy. This looks amazing, and I'm sure it tasted it, too!

  15. doreese said... May 5, 2011 at 10:14 PM

    I'm lovin these Korean dishes!! Yayy!!

  16. Food-Family and Friends said... November 9, 2011 at 10:55 AM

    This looks amazing. Thank you for sharing. I can't wait to try it.

  17. Jessie said... November 9, 2011 at 5:32 PM

    Hello! I just came across your site through Foodbuzz. I've always wanted to do this at home so thank you for the wonderful recipe. Just a quick question: what kind of anchovy are you using? Is it stuff in a can? Fresh anchovy? And where do you buy dried anchovy? It sounds like something an Asian market would have but I've never looked for it so I don't know if it might be a Korean specialty. Thank you!

  18. Gerald, Bae said... November 10, 2011 at 1:59 AM

    It looks perfect. ^^

    정말 맛있어 보입니다. ㅎ

  19. Nippon Nin said... November 10, 2011 at 10:13 PM

    Wow! mashike sumida. nomo nomo choayo.kamusahaminida.
    I wish I have Korean language program.
    This looks delicious!

  20. Fat PomPom said... November 11, 2011 at 7:43 AM

    This recipe looks delicious, I always order this soup when I eat at a Korean restaurant!!

  21. Harmonity Rivertree said... October 5, 2012 at 11:33 AM

    I stumbled across your recipe for this soup and I can't wait to make it on my own! The only thing I would change is no jalapenos, as I'm sensitive to them, but it's still as delicious as ever!