Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Auntie Kim's Duk!

In a little corner of Thomson Ridge, Auntie Kim (or Kim Myeong Ae to be rudely exact) opened a shiny new shop selling sweet 떡 (duk, Korean rice cakes).
Said The Business Times rather tour pamphlet-ishly:
Traditionally, it was only served at special celebrations such as birthdays and festivals, but these days it is much more widely available and is popular snack food in every Korean household.

In Korea, there are different types of duk, with ingredients, shapes and tastes varying from region to region. Specific cakes are served at specific occasions. Duk is made mainly from rice or glutinous rice that has been ground up, steamed, turned into dough and stuffed with a variety of sweet fillings before being transformed into dumplings or bread-like cakes. The taste and texture is similar, perhaps, to certain types of nonya kueh or mochi, the equally chewy Japanese version of glutinous rice cakes.

Duk - in the form of rolls or oval-shaped discs - is also the main ingredient in savoury dishes such as dukboki (similar to the Chinese chee cheong fun where the rice rolls are slathered with a fiery red sweet and spicy sauce) and duk gook (rice cakes and dumplings in beef broth).
Auntie Kim only sells the sweet 'uns for now, made by specially imported Korean bakers "without milk, eggs, butter or preservatives".

"Old people eat them all day without feeling full!" she enthused,"and you eat them with alternate bites of kimchi!", at which point, all the uninitiated shuddered with horror and her Singaporean business partner calmly handed each of us the business card of Auntie Kim's Korean Restaurant down the road where we could procure the aforementioned kimchi and then of their flagship Ahan Thai Restaurant even further down the road where we could have authentic Thai should we so wish for more severely hot and sour stuff.
I bought a box of duk for my brother who hearts all things Korean, especially, I suspect, their womenfolk.

"He has good taste, your brother." said Auntie Kim.

Indeed. Perhaps God will use a nice Christian Korean girl to bring him into a saving relationship with Him where all other attempts have been rebuffed.

Hankook Rice Cake House
9 Thomson Ridge
Tel: 6456-3456

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