Army stew is quite commonly found on the menus of most Korean restaurants in Singapore and is typically priced in the range of S$40-50 but the portion is often good enough to be shared by at least 4 persons.
I would call this a Korean version of steamboat because it literally is a pot filled with all kinds of ingredients with a broth that is flavoured with gochujang (Korean chilli paste). That’s also how the name of the dish came about during and after the Korean war when food supply was scarce and people would just put whatever edible items they had into a spicy soup. So the good thing is, everything in this pot is substitutable so you can just clean out your fridge and pantry or buy fresh ingredients you like.
If you don’t have fresh chicken stock on hand, you can just dissolve 1 chicken or vegetable stock cube in the same amount of hot water.
Korean Army Stew | Budae Jjigae Recipe
Ingredients (serves 4)
320g Chinese cabbage, sliced
200g shimeji mushrooms, ends trimmed
120g enoki mushrooms, ends trimmed
1 large yellow onion, peeled & sliced
200g chicken luncheon meat, thickly sliced
6 chicken frankfurters, cut into thirds
1 can 400g cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
200g Korean fresh rice cakes, rinsed in cold water
150g tube egg tofu, sliced
100g cabbage kimchi
60g sweet potato vermicelli, soaked in water till fully constituted
2 stalks spring onions, cut into 1″ sections
1.7l hot chicken stock
1 slice processed cheese
Sauce: (mix in a bowl)
3 tbsp gochujang
1 tsp gochugaru (Korean chilli powder)
1/2 bulb garlic, peeled & finely chopped
2 tsp sesame oil
1. Arrange cabbage on the bottom of a steamboat pot, followed by the rest of the ingredients (except spring onions, stock, noodles & cheese) and sauce on top.
2. Slowly pour in the stock and turn on high heat to bring everything to a boil.
3. Use a spoon to slowly mix the sauce with the broth without messing up the other ingredients.
4. Add the noodles on top, followed by the cheese. Cook for another 30 seconds and turn off the heat.
5. Garnish with spring onions and serve.
Alternatively, you can do the above on an induction cooker at the dining table so everyone can cook and eat like how you would in a steamboat. It’s a great way to host a group meal at home. Enjoy!