Korean Cooking: Korean Rice Cake Soup (Tteokguk – 떡국)

새해 복 많이 받으세요! Happy New Year everyone!

This New Year, I decided to make it a Korean New Year meal for my family. And today, I started off with Tteokguk (떡국), also known as Korean Rice Cake Soup.

A traditional New Year dish in Korea, Tteokguk – 떡국 is a soup of sliced rice cakes served usually in beef broth. Made with garaetteok (가래떡) sliced into thin oval shapes, the white oval shape are believed to symbolize a prosperous and good New Year ahead. 

The Korean traditionally age another year on New Year, so it is common that one must eat a bowl of Tteokguk (떡국) to become a year older and wiser.

Surprisingly, my boys loved Tteokguk (떡국) and had requested for me to add it their regular meals where time permits for me to prepare the dish. A pretty easy dish to make as long as I have the Beef Stock available (I usually made them and batch them before stocking them in the freezer). So, I know I would be spending the next weekend to prepare the Beef Stock in the freezer.

My Tteokguk (떡국) is adapted from Korean Bapsang – Tteokguk


Beef Broth
  • 300 gms beef brisket (양지머리) / oxtail (쇠고기)
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 5 – 6 cloves of garlic
  • 10 cups of water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 egg – for egg garnish
  • 1 scallion
  • Takuan (crunchy daikon pickle)
Rice cakes (garae tteok)
  • 4 cups sliced garaetteok (가래떡) – (Soak in cold water for 30 minutes)img_5411
  1. Prepare the beef broth by putting all the ingredients into the slow cooker. I use oxtail (쇠고기) as that was what I had in my freezer this week. Let it cook in the slow cooker for at least 4 hours till the oxtail is soft.
  2. Make the egg garnish. Lightly beat the egg. Season accordingly with salt and pepper.
  3. On the heat lightly oiled skillet, cook the egg over medium low heat. Cook each side briefly. Slice into thin strips and set aside
  4. Cut the scallion into 1 inch slice each. Set aside
  5. Cut the takuan into 1 inch slice each. Set asideimg_5415
  6. In the saucepan, bring the stock to boil. Add the rice cake slices. Boil for about 5 minutes.
  7. Ladle the steaming soup into individual bowls and garnish with the egg, scallion and takuan strips.
  8. Serve hot


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