Spice up your life with a hot bowl of rabokki ramen. Rabokki ramen is a wild combination of flavors that takes two hugely popular noodle dishes and smashes them together to create an absolute powerhouse of flavor. A perfect blend of thin, slurpable noodles, with slices of Korean rice cake to add body to a rich, hearty broth, Rabokki ramen is one of the coolest ways to enjoy a bowl of craft instant ramen.
Rabokki = Ramen + TTeokbokki.
Rabokki is actually a shorthand term for an incredibly addicting combination of two very classic noodle dishes, Ramen and Tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes). While you're probably familiar with ramen and instant ramen noodles, TTeokbokki might be new to you.
Tteokbokki is a hyper-delicious Korean street food traditionally made from Korean rice cakes, fish cakes, soup broth, and gochujang or Korean chili paste. The combination is usually rich, and saucy, but not necessarily brothy, it is also filled with an earthy spiciness that is insanely addicting.
Rabokki as a word is a combination of Ramen and Tteokbokki, and it's super easy to make at home. By combining the perfect ramen noodles, fluffy rice cakes, craft soup base, sesame oil, and gochujang you end up with a bowl of ramen that's hearty, and mouthwateringly spicy.
One of the more common garnishes for Tteokbokki is sliced hard-boiled eggs, you can certainly go the traditional route with this recipe but, in the classic ramen fashion, a soft poached egg really makes this dish stand out.
What the heck are Korean Rice Cakes?
If you are not familiar with Tteokbokki you're almost certainly not going to be acquainted with Korean Rice Cakes. While you might be thinking about those stale, flavorless round snack things that always seemed to live in the back of older relatives' cupboards, Korean rice cakes are very different.
Korean rice cakes or Tteok are a type of noodle or dumpling made by steaming a dough made from various grains, but mostly glutinous and not glutinous rice flour. While there are countless varieties and shapes, the ones you'll be using in Rabokki ramen look like white penne pasta without a hole in the center, and can usually be found in an international grocery store or market.
If you don't have access to a good international grocery store, consider searching for Korean rice cakes online, you can freeze them, and they will keep in your refrigerator for quite a while.
This recipe uses our Mike's Mighty Good Vegetarian Kimchi Ramen Pillow Pack.
What kind of seasonings do you need to make Rabokki?
To begin with, you're going to want to start with a savory or spicy ramen pack. Using a style like our Vegetarian Kimchi Ramen is a great way to really start with the perfect flavor profile for this dish. The incredible kimchi flavor as well as the steamed organic ramen noodles we craft in-house from scratch create the perfect pallet to build upon.
The other major seasoning component in this dish is Gochujang or Korean fermented chili paste. Gochujang is created by fermenting a paste made from rice flour and gochugaru(Korean chili powder) in large clay oni pots. The fermentation/aging process mellows the sharper spiciness of the pepper powder, creating a sweet heat that won't overpower your taste buds.
Like with Korean rice cakes, you're going to need to head to an international market or grocery store to find gochujang. You can always order your ingredients online if you're having trouble sourcing them, but whatever you do, don't substitute the gochujang for another pepper paste. We really love the gochujang from our friends at Mother-In-Law’s Kimchi. Gochujang is super important to this flavor profile. You'll also find that other pepper pastes or hot sauces like sambal olek or sriracha will be far spicier overall.
How to make Rabokki Ramen.
Making rabokki ramen is really very simple. First, prepare your rice cakes by soaking them in cold water for 10 minutes. Once the rice cakes have been fully soaked and rehydrated, drain the cakes and allow them to chill on a paper towel while you prepare the rest of your ingredients.
Place a pot of water on your stove and bring it to a boil. Open your pack of Mike's mighty good craft ramen and remove the noodles. Cook the ramen noodles in the boiling water and then strain the noodles leaving 1 cup of water behind in the pot.
Return the noodles to your saucepot and add the rice cakes. Place the pot back onto the burner and turn it to medium/high heat. Next, you'll add the seasoning packet as well as sugar, oil, gochujang, and soy sauce.
Stir everything together and allow the mixture to come to a simmer. Carefully crack an egg into the pot and allow it to poach as the ramen cooks and thickens. Once the egg is cooked to your liking you can remove the pot from the stove and carefully transfer your Rabokki ramen to a bowl. Garnish the entire thing with some toasted sesame seeds and freshly sliced green onions!
While this recipe doesn't call for Korean fish cake, if you are a fan of the flavor and want the most traditional rabokki ramen possible, go ahead and throw some in at the beginning of the cooking process with the noodles and rice cakes!
What is your favorite ramen hack/combo? Let us know in the comments and we'll be sure to check it out!