Trader Joe’s Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes) Review

Trader Joe's Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes)

According to the Trader Joe’s website, tteok bok ki comes from a 19th Century Korean recipe book as an example of court food. This means, TJ’s surmises, that this is food fit for a king. So we’re going test that theory today by checking out the Trader Joe’s Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes).

This is easy enough to cook, but there is something of a process to it. We went with the crispy method for this. (If you want to read the full cooking instructions straight off the bag, check out the package scans at the bottom of this review.)

For this method, you’ll add some water to a sauce pan, then dump in the contents of the sauce packet and heat the resulting concoction to a boil. We should point out here that the instructions say to add a cup of water, but we read elsewhere that this might cause the sauce to end up a little watery and that it’s better to tone that down to about 3/4 of a cup. So we took that advice. Once that’s all done, let the sauce thicken up for six to eight minutes.

Now, you’ll also need to soak the rice cakes for about 15 minutes, then dry them off and cook them up in an oiled skillet for two to three minutes per side. Combine the sauce and the rice cakes, then serve.

Trader Joe's Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes)

We tried to follow these instructions as closely as possible, but our rice cakes turned out incredibly chewy. They were like chewing on pieces of rubber. It’s possible we didn’t let them soak long enough, or that we overcooked them, or that we made some other minor mistake along the way, but we really did try to do exactly what the instructions said.

As far as flavor goes, though, this is delicious. The sauce is incredible, with that sweet-and-spicy combo that Korean cuisine tends to excel at. And it has a pretty decent spice level. It won’t impress those folks who like to set their tongues on fire for the fun of it, but we found that this sauce cleared out our sinuses pretty well.

So is this actually fit for a king? Well, we’re not really sure what the tastes of 19th Century royalty would be like, and we’re also not sure how authentic this batch of food actually is. We imagine that the “kingly” offering is probably softer and less rubbery, but maybe 19th Century kings and queens were fond of exercising their masticators. If only time travel were possible so we could ask them! We’d actually also like to ask them about their thoughts on a Lotzza Motzza pizza or an El Monterey burrito. Those things would probably blow their minds. Then again, maybe not. Who’s to say?

According to the package, there should be about three servings inside. We think that’s a bit of a stretch, and that 1/2 to 2/3 of the contents is a better serving size. At the same time, these are surprisingly filling, so we don’t think you’ll be tempted to eat the whole bag in one sitting. If you stick with the recommended 1/3, though, you’ll be consuming 280 calories and 420 mg of sodium. This means that our 2/3 serving contained about 560 calories and 840 mg of sodium. A full bag, then, would have 840 calories and 1,260 mg of sodium.

The Trader Joe’s Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes) are very tasty, but our batch ended up super rubbery. We might have to try a second batch of these, because maybe we could fix that by adjusting our cooking process a little bit. If these were a little bit softer, we think we’d love them to pieces.

To learn more about the nutrition content, ingredients, or cooking instructions for these frozen rice cakes, check out our package scans below.

Trader Joe's Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes)
Trader Joe's Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes)
Trader Joe's Tteok Bok Ki (Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Rice Cakes)
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1 year ago

super yummie wummy

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