Reach for the Light


Tteokbokki Recipe

This dish is one I’ve wanted to make for a while and never done so because I lack the ingredients, but I finally figured out a way to replace the ingredients I can’t find with ones I can. It’s a Korean traditional dish, and I love experimenting with foreign cuisines. It is a very tasty rice cake dish. 

What is Garaetteok?

Garaetteok, garae-tteok, and garaeddeok are cylinder-shaped varieties of Korean rice cakes. Mepssal-garu, a non-glutinous rice flour used in its production, gives it a little chewy and springy feel.

When making garaetteok, short grain or medium grain rice work well. (For example, long-grain rice like basmati or jasmine rice won’t function well.)

However, in Pakistan all that I have available to me is Basmati, so I made some adjustments to the traditional recipe, to get the result I wanted. If you have short grain rice, or short grain rice flour, you don’t have to go to the trouble.

This recipe is in parts, because I did not even have rice flour, so I had to make my own. 

The Garaetteok Ingredients 

  • Rice 2 cups (Basmati/long grain)
  • Plain white flour ½ cup
  • Water
  • Oil 5-6 tbsp.
  • Salt ½ tsp.

How to make rice flour

  1. Rinse 2 cups of rice until the water drains clear. 
  2. Dry on a towel for three-four hours, until they feel dry to the touch. 
  3. Blend rice in a spice grinder until it becomes a powder. Sieve with a fine mesh strainer and re-grind to get finer flour. 

How to make Garaetteok

Set up a steamer.

Mix rice flour (2 cups) and plain flour (½ cup) with a half teaspoon of salt in a bowl.

Add 4 cups of warm water to the bowl and beat with a whisk until well combined. 

 Set the bowl in the steamer and cover well with a tight lid or foil. 

Let steam for 15 mins checking every five minutes, if the rice has absorbed the water and appears almost dry, it is ready. 

Take it out and start pounding the hot mixture with a pestle. You can transfer the mix with a spatula to a mortar or just do it in the bowl (if it is a metal bowl, a ceramic will break.)

Pound it for 10 mins with the pestle or mallet and fold it over itself while you do so. 

Let the dough ret for 15 mins while you prepare a clean oiled surface to roll it out. 

Take two tablespoons of the dough and roll into a thin log. Cut with diagonals into the appropriate shape as below. 

Let rest uncovered on trays for two to three hours. Once somewhat dry, boil bad add to the sauce. 

For the Sauce

  • Onion 2 large
  • Carrot 1 large
  • Cabbage 2 cups shredded 
  • Soy sauce 1 cup
  • Ketchup 1 cup
  • Red chilli powder 1 tsp
  • Garlic 6-8 cloves
  • Ginger 1 inch.
  • Honey 2 tsp. 
  • Brown Sugar 3 tsp. 
  • Salt 2 tsp. 
  • Daikon radish 2 small
  • Radish 2 small
  • Beef, chicken or vegetable stock – 2 cup or 2 cube 
  • Vinegar 2 tbsp. 
  • Garam Masala 1 tsp
  • Green mint and coriander chutney (optional) 6 tbsps.
  • 4 cups water
  • cornflour 1 ½ tbsp
  • Desi ghee or butter 2 tbsp.


  1. Cut the carrots, radish, daikon radish into thick matchsticks. 
  2. Chop the onion into large pieces and shred the cabbage. 
  3. Grind the ginger and garlic to paste.
  4. Add the salt, red chilli powder, honey, brown sugar, vinegar, chutney, garam Masala, ginger and garlic, water, stock, soy sauce, ketchup and carrots, radish, cabbage, and daikon to a large pot. 
  5. Cook and let come to a boil over high heat, lower heat and let simmer for 20 mins, add onions after 10 mins and cook until the vegetables are soft yet chewy. 
  6. Reduce the sauce until it is half the volume.
  7. Once vegetables are done, add the rice cakes (Garaetteok) to boiling in a large pot water in batches and cook till they float to the surface. Then remove and put into an ice bath. 
  8. After all the rice cakes are done, strain and add them to the sauce. Then cook for five minutes, add the cornflour by creating a slurry of cornflour and two tbsp. Water. 
  9. Mix and cook until sauce is thick and coats the back of a spoon. 
  10. Serve hot with a garnish of thinly sliced green onion. 
Please follow and like us:

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.