Cook up some flavorul and filling restaurant-style Korean sauteed rice cakes for only a quarter of the price!
Korean rice cakes, called tteok, are rice cakes made from grains of rice that have been broken down into fine flour. Because it is made from rice, it is gluten-free and is the perfect dish for anyone who is gluten intolerant, has Coeliac’s disease, or simply trying to reduce gluten intake. Keep in mind that soy sauce does contain gluten, so you would have to purchase gluten-free soy sauce. Tteok is a staple in Korean cuisine and is typically eaten in a red, spicy stew or stir-fried with a lighter sauce. I made the stir-fried version and it is so flavorful and packed with plenty of vegetables!
Because the dish is a stir-fry, you may toss anything you would like into the dish. Traditional ingredients would include pork or beef, carrots, napa cabbage, green onions, and fish cakes. However, you can add anything from broccoli to egg to bok choy, and it will taste delicious nonetheless. Asian cuisine typically requires more ingredients than Western cuisine, so the ingredient list is slightly lengthier. Many of the spices/sauces are staples in East Asian cooking or they can be found in Asian supermarket stores and the international aisle of the grocery store. I have included a few substitutions in the ingredients list in case the ingredients may be difficult to find.
Korean Sauteed Rice Cakes (GF)
yield: 5 servings
For rice cakes:
- 1 c. ground beef or pork (80% or above lean)
- 5 tbsp light soy sauce (use GF soy sauce if GF)
- 2 garlic cloves, grated
- 1 tbsp. mirin or white wine
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 3 tbsp. kimchi liquid OR 1 tbsp. gochujang
- 1/2 medium red apple, grated, skin peeled (Apple adds natural sweetness)
- 1 tbsp. honey
- 4 c. Korean rice cakes
- 1 medium yellow onion, sliced into medium strips
- 2 peeled carrots, sliced into medium strips
- 2 c. fresh spinach (optional), chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 10-12 large shrimp, thawed and peeled
- 2 stalks green onion, cut into 1 1/2 in. pieces
- 3 tbsp. light soy sauce (Use GF soy sauce if GF)
- 3 tbsp. water
- 2 tbsp mirin
- 2 tbsp. honey
- salt and pepper, as needed
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 tsp. gochujang or Korean pepper flakes OR sriracha
- White sesame seeds to top (optional)
- Place the ground meat in a medium bowl and add the soy sauce, grated garlic, mirin, sesame oil, kimchi liquid, grated apple, and honey. Combine the meat until fully incorporated and cover, place in the fridge, and allow to marinade for at least 30 min.
- Take the rice cakes and soak them in hot water for at least 20 min if hard and frozen. If fresh cakes, soak in water for 10 min. Once they are soaked, drain them.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the sauce ingredients and set aside.
- In a large wok or pan on high heat, add in 1 tsp. vegetable oil and saute the onions and carrots for about 7 min.
- Add in the marinated pork, sauce, and garlic and saute for about 4 more min.
- Add the rice cakes, shrimp and spinach and saute for 5 more min. Because the rice cakes have already been partially cooked in hot water, you do not have to cook them too long, otherwise they will get soggy.
- Add in the green onions and cook for 1 min. Turn the heat off and serve immediately. Top with extra sesame seeds and chopped green onions for presentation.
Because the rice cakes are not very spicy, feel free to eat them with some hot sauce or kimchi on the side. The rice cakes can be refrigerated up to 3 days when stored in an airtight container.