When I mention Tokyo Sundubu, most people will think that it’s a Japanese restaurant. In fact Sundubu is a type of Korean stew featuring tofu cooked with a variety of ingredients such as vegetables, meat and seafood. The dish gained popularity after a restaurant specializing in Sundubu opened in Los Angeles by a Korean immigrant.
Visited the store in Suntec on a weekday night and was surprised to find the mall rather quiet.
Other than their speciality item, we ordered the Chicken Chijimi $12 (Korean Pancake) as starter. The chijimi served here was the thinnest and crispiest one that I had ever tasted, comparable to thin-crust pizzas. It had a wonderful texture along with a tasty dipping sauce.
As for the Sundubu, using different ingredients, soup base and spiciness level, there can be over 20+ variations!
You can choose your Sundubu by first deciding on the type of ingredient you would like to have such as seafood/vegetable/meat followed by the soup base: Miso, Salt & Ginger and Non-spicy. Naturally spiciness level can only be applied to Miso or Salt & Ginger. Of the 4 levels, the staff recommended either Japan Standard (Level 2) or Singapore Standard (Level 3).
We had the Mentai Cheese Sundubu in miso base $20 (left) and the Seafood Sundubu in salt & ginger base $24 (right) both at spiciness Level 3. The cheese and mentai are served in a separate small bowl and we are told to add them into the boiling soup when it was presented to us. The addition of cheese made the soup thicker and richer, the mentai cheese sundubu had minced meat along with some clams and scallops in it.
Something that surprised me was the mildness of the taste of Gochujang. I’m not a fan of bibimbap cos of the fermented taste…but for the Sundubu served here, I had not issue with it!
As for the seafood sundubu, the staff shared that all the ingredients have been de-shelled, which was very thoughtful for ladies. Hence they used soft-shell crab, along with clams and scallops in the soup.
Amongst the two, the miso base is definitely saltier than the salt & ginger base. The miso base is rich while the salt & ginger base is more appetizing and refreshing.
Both the sundubus included a semi-raw egg and lots of ultra silky tofu!
One step that most people probably missed out when enjoying the sundubu is the 2nd step of instructions given:
(i) Use your spoon to mix the entire bowl well while the sundubu is sizzling hot. Semi-raw egg and fluffy tofu blended together with sauce will give you superb flavour!
(ii) After finishing half of the rice add namuru and preferred amount of Gochujang sauce over the remaining rice. Pour your sudubu over them, mix well and indulge!
For me, I had already finished eating the namuru (side dish) as I ate them intermittently with the meal…Secondly, for every scoop of rice I have on my spoon, I tried to fill it up with the delicious soup!
The portion was pretty filling for me as I had difficulty finishing up the whole soup, perhaps the cheese made it even more filling.
We absolutely loved the smooth tofu boiled in the spicy soup. It’s richer than most of the typical korean seafood tofu soup that we had ever tried.
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