Researching Soondubu Jjigae (Korean spicy soft tofu stew)

Kyra Low
4 min readApr 13, 2021


(All info and images taken from, and

Image from

Sundubu jjigae (also spelled soondubu jjigae) is a Korean stew made with soft tofu as a highlight ingredient. “Jjigae” means stew in Korean. There are a few different ways to make sundubu jjigae using different ingredients (e.g. kimchi, minced pork and seafood).
- From

It’s one of my favorite foods and is especially perfect for a cold day. I want to attempt making this some day, so I’ve decided to do some research and understand the ingredients and steps involved!

Ingredients needed:


  • Anchovy kelp stock
  • 2 tablespoons hot pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • ½ cup pork belly (or any cut of pork: 2.5 ounces), cut into small pieces
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • ½ cup well-fermented kimchi (4 ounces), chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tube of soft tofu (sundubu)
  • 1 egg



Preparing Ingredients:

(Actions: Scooping and measuring out chili flakes, cutting pork, chopping onion, garlic, green onion, kimchi)

Make the spicy paste:

  1. Combine the hot pepper flakes and the sesame oil in a small bowl and mix well.

(Actions: Tilting of bowl (with pepper flakes) into mixing bowl, gripping bottle, tilting bottle, gripping of spoon (to measure sesame oil), holding mixing bowl, gripping spoon, stirring spoon to mix)

Put it together:

  1. Heat up a 3 cup earthenware pot (ttukbaegi) on the stove over medium high heat for about 3 to 4 minutes.

(Actions: Carrying bowl (transfer to stove), switching on stove (turning a knob))

2. Add the vegetable oil, onion, and garlic. Stir it with a wooden spoon for 1 minute.

(Actions: Gripping vegetable oil bottle, tilting bottle, measuring vegetable oil using spoon, transfer onion and garlic to pot (either from chopping board or bowls) by tilting bowl or just sweeping ingredients into pot, stirring spoon)

3. Add the pork. Stir for 3 minutes until the pork is no longer pink.

(Actions: Transfer pork from bowl or chopping board, stirring spoon)

4. Add kimchi and keep stirring for a minute. Add ½ cup anchovy stock. Cover and cook for 7 minutes over medium heat.

(Actions: Transfer kimchi from bowl, stir spoon, measure anchovy stock, carry and cover lid, set timer for 7 minutes)

5. Add the salt and the sugar and mix well.

(Actions: Measure salt and sugar, add to bowl, stir spoon)

6. Cut the tube of soft tofu into half and squeeze it out into the pot. Gently break up the tofu with a wooden spoon. If you want, add a few tablespoons of stock.

(Actions: Grip knife, cut tofu with knife, squeeze tofu, break tofu with spoon)

7. Put the hot pepper mixture on top and spread it with the spoon.

(Actions: Grip spoon, scoop hot pepper mixture with spoon, spread with spoon)

8. Crack the egg and put it on top, in the center of the stew. Let it bubble and sizzle for 1 minute.

(Actions: Crack egg on top of pot)

9. Sprinkle with the chopped green onion and serve with rice and a few more side dishes.

(Actions: Sprinkle green onion)

Final Product: Pot with soondubu jjigae, bowl of rice, metal spoon

List of Actions:

  • Gripping spoon + scooping with it
  • Gripping spoon + stirring with it
  • Pouring ingredients in spoon to pot
  • Gripping knife + cutting food with it
  • Carrying pot, pot lid or bowl
  • Gripping bottles of sauce or oil + tilting it to pour it out
  • Turning knob of stove
  • Tipping of bowl over (to pour ingredients out)
  • Sweeping ingredients from chopping board into pot
  • Pressing buttons of timer
  • Squeeze tofu
  • Spread hot pepper mixture with spoon
  • Crack egg



Kyra Low