Do you know what it means to call someone a tofu in the Asian culture? It means that the someone is soft, and prone to crying. All defenceless and weak, like a block of silken tofu.
Well, that’s the idea anyway.
But for all its tenderness, it’s very hard to cook with silken tofu, and cook it well. When done right, it soaks up all the surrounding flavours, but retains its velvet silkiness. Ang you would hope restaurant that calls itself a tofu house, is going to do right by it.
The decision to go to BCD Tofu House was indeed one based on tofu. Tofu stew, that is. Also known as Soondubu Jigae, this winter comfort involves soft tofu, a chilli soup, and ribbons of egg. But one cannot survive on tofu alone, so of course, we order other things.
The Seafood Pancake was quite nice in a not-fancy-pants sorta way. Seafood that isn’t overcooked, and a pancake that’s cooked all the way through with no remnant of floury batter. I don’t think that’s asking for too much. The Japchae was a hit with me and Christine, but deemed by resident Korean food expert Simon as having that “reheated, oily taste”, which tells you how little I actually know about Korean cuisine.
But hey, I didn’t grow up eating Japchae, so I’d go with what Simon says.
Also on the table were Stewed Beef Ribs, and Bossam. Beef ribs in any form, I like, and this spicy soupy thing with tender radish chunks? Yes please! And bits of chewy noodles down the bottom of the pot. Because not everything needs rice.
I’m kidding. Of course everything needs rice. What kind of an Asian do you think I am?
The Bossam was also on point. Well, the pork anyway. Neatly sliced pieces of braised pork with the right ratio of fat to meat. I could’ve eaten it all day long. The lettuce, not so much. Usually served with a softer, more refreshing salad leaf, this one was served with rigid Chinese cabbage, that just made it very hard to eat.
Oh well, I just have to eat pork and sauce then. Hard life.
As for the Soondubu Jigae? Well, according to our resident Korean food expert, it’s actually quite decent, although not quite as good as you can make at home. Although, most things get that way when you know how to make it properly. All I know was that it was a cold night, and the hot spicy stew served over rice was just the ticket.