Saturday, April 11, 2009

Rice Cake Dosirak From Dr. Yoon's Jirisu Cafe

A Dosirak (도시락) in Korean is a lunch box and Dr. Yoon has invented her own version using tteok as the main component. To the top corner you have a crisp lettuce salad dressed with a gochujang (chili) and tengjang (fermented soybean) dressing. It's a tangy dressing with a slight hint of heat.

In the center are tiny myeolchi (멸치). These are baby anchovies sauteed with a bit oil and flavored with crunchy peanuts and garnished with red peppers and green onions.

To the bottom left are kimchi kimbap. The rice part of the roll is made out of ricecake. It's an unconventional approach to a timeless dish. The chewyness of the rice cake (떡) was bizarre and welcome at the same time.

Above the rice cake are sweet potato rice cake snacks. These have mashed sweet potato in the middle. The potato is then are wrapped in rice cake and fried. Then they are glazed with a sweet candy coating. It is crispy on the outside and soft in the inside. It's like an M & M- just imagine sweet potato instead of chocolate. strange as it sounds, it's really awesome.

Then you have your egg salad sandwich which uses tteok (떡) instead of white bread. The egg filling had crunchy accents of cabbage, pickles and carrots. The mayonnaise with hints of mustard made it taste like a normal egg sandwich but -again- with the chewy, wholesome taste of rice cake.

Jirisu Cafe gave us an extra side- a traditional teokbokki (떡볶이). This dish wasn't drowning in the ubiquitous red sauce you'd see on the street. It also didn't have the fried fish cake (O-deng). It had a mild soy sauce dressing, earthy mushrooms, pumpkin seeds, pinenuts, turnips, onions, and tteok (떡). It was light and it was great to taste all the different components of the dish.

To finish we had some of Dr. Yoon's famous rice cake. I had a flower cake stuffed with white bean and a coffee rice cake. The coffee tteok was make cake style, so it was steamed in a mold. It is my favorite cake that she has and it goes great with coffee in the morning. The coffee flavor isn't overly powerful, and the chewy mild rice flavor is like cream- mellowing.

Go to Dr. Yoon's Jirisu Cafe. It's a great place for tea, rice cake, and dosiraks.