Gool Gukbap (Oyster Soup & Rice)

Gukbap literally translates to soup rice. Soup and rice are the most common meal combinations you will find on a Korean table, especially for breakfast or lunch. This soup is a light and refreshing soup that really lends it's deliciously briny flavor to the oysters. To be honest this is one of my favorite hangover meals, haha...

Serve with sticky white rice before ladling on the soup. I also love eating it with cooked pearl barley as well, which is shown in this post's image. I think it should be voted as a super food dish, as it is rich with minerals from the sea vegetables and relatively low in calories (if you're into all that). It is crucial to eat this soup piping hot! 

(Serves 3 to 4)

Ingredients

7 cups of water

Palm sized pice of dashima (dried sea kelp aka kombu)

6 dashi dried anchovies, gutted but heads reserved

1.5 cups thinly sliced daikon, cut into bite sized pieces

2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 cup reconstituted and rinsed miyeok (Korean dried seaweed)

8 oz package of flash frozen oysters (although fresh is best!)

1 teaspoon guk ganjang (Korean soy sauce for soups)

2 teaspoons sea salt

ground white pepper to taste

chives or green onions, thinly sliced or cut into small pieces for garnish

1 large egg, beaten (optional)

a few drops sesame oil (optional)

 

 I use flash frozen oysters often since they are frozen right after capture and maintain great flavor and freshness.

I use flash frozen oysters often since they are frozen right after capture and maintain great flavor and freshness.

Begin thawing your oysters by placing them in cool salt water. You can find the flash frozen (which really captures their freshness) oysters at Asian/Korean markets in the frozen seafoods aisle. 

Bring water, dashima and anchovies to a boil. Let boil for 3 minutes and then remove dashima. Lower heat to bring broth to a simmer, cover pot with lid and let simmer for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, skim out anchovies and discard. Bring broth to a boil then add daikon and seaweed. Lower heat again to bring soup to a simmer. Let simmer for about 10 minutes or until daikon begins to soften. Skim off any scum from the surface (this step is actually very important!).

Drain oysters and give them a quick rinse under cold water in colander.

Bring soup again to a boil then add in oysters. Add in garlic, soy sauce, salt and white pepper. Let soup remain at a rolling boil for 3 minutes. If you want to add in some feathery eggs into your soup, slowly pour into soup near the tail end of cooking. 

Remove soup from heat. Top with fresh chopped chives and a few drops of sesame oil as garnish. Ladle hot soup over rice in a large soup bowl and enjoy!