Koreans eat miyeokguk on birthdays as well as for regular meals. Miyeokguk is also the #1 postpartum food in Korea because of its amazing health benefits. Miyeokguk is also very soothing for your stomach.
Miyeok is considered to be one of the super foods even in North America even though it's not in the normal American diet. It is a great source of calcium, iodine, fibre, omega acids, vitamin B1 & B3, while low in calorie. People believe that its health benefits are infinite: metabolism regulation, blood purification, constipation relief, detoxification, anti-carcinogen, anti-aging etc. For this reason, Korean women eat Miyeokguk (seaweed soup) after giving birth. They say this tradition started in the Goryeo Dynasty when people observed whales eating miyeok after giving birth (believe it or not).
Koreans eat miyeokguk on birthdays to remember mothers' hard work in giving birth and raising their children.
In southern parts of Korea, people make miyeokguk with seafoods like oyster, clam, sea urchin, rock fish, abalone, etc instead of beef. You can also use chicken if you don't eat red meat.
You can buy Miyeokguk ingredient online here.
|1 oz||Sea Mustard (Miyeok or Brown Seaweed) 미역 (dried)|
|9 oz||Beef (cubed for stew) 국거리소고기|
|1 tsp||Salt 소금 (may need less or more)|
|1 tbs||Soy Sauce for Soup (Gukganjang) 국간장|
|1 tsp||Garlic (minced) 다진 마늘|
|2 tsp||Sesame Oil 참기름|
|for rice-rinsed water (optional)|
|9 cups||Water 물|
|2 cups||Rice, white short grain 쌀|
Optional Ingredients and Substitutions
Dried miyeok: Depending on how dry the miyeok is, the amount of dried miyeok needed may vary. For dried "pre-cut" miyeok, you may need less because it increases more in volume than regular dried miyeok when soaked. After soaking for 30 minutes, it should be about 2 cups for 4 servings. However, you can add more miyeok if you love it.
Soy Sauce for Soup (Gook Gan Jan): You can use regular soy sauce or just salt.
Rice-rinsed-water: If you don't want to use rice-rinsed water, use regular water. Then, you can mix 1 tsp of four with ¼ cup of cold water until there is no lump. Add this to the soup in the last 5 min while stirring.
Beef: Instead of beef you can use chicken or seafoods like mussel, clam, oyster, clam, sea urchin, rock fish, and abalone. If you are using seafood, make broth with anchovies and rice-rinsed-water. Sauté miyeok in sesame oil then add this broth, salt and soy sauce and boil for a while. Then, add seafood in the last 5 minutes.
More questions? Please leave your questions below in the comment section. We will do our best to answer as soon as we can.
Ingredient amounts in the recipe instructions are for the default serving size.
Click to enlarge photos.
Ingredient amounts in the recipe summary are for the default serving size.
1. Soak dried miyeok
Soak 10 to 20g of dried miyeok in water for at least 30 min. More than an hour is ideal. Depending on how dry the miyeok is, the amount of dried miyeok needed may vary. For dried “pre-cut” miyeok, you may need less because it increases more in volume than regular dried miyeok when soaked. In general, you need about a handful of dried seaweed or 2 cups after soaking for 4 servings. However, you can add more miyeok if you love it.
Soak 30 min
2. Rinse and drain
Rinse miyeok thoroughly twice and drain. Cut into about 5 inches length. (You can cut into whatever length you prefer.)
Rinse miyeok twice
3. Prepare rice-rinsed-water
In a large bowl, wash 2 cups of rice and drain. Pour more than 9 cups of water and rub rice grains to get milky colored water. Save this milky water for the soup base. You can use the rice to make rice. If you don’t want to use rice-rinsed water, use regular water. Then, you can mix 1 tsp of flour (or sweet rice flour) with ¼ cup of cold water until there is no lump. Add this to the soup in the last 5 min while stirring.
Wash 2 cups rice
Add 9+ cups water
Save milky water
4. Sauté beef and miyeok
Cut beef into bite sized pieces if it’s not pre-cut. In a large pot, sauté beef in 1 tbs of sesame oil while stirring on high heat for 3 min. Add miyeok and sauté for another 5 min. Add a bit more sesame oil if it starts to stick to the bottom.
Sauté beef in 1 tbs of sesame oil
High Heat 3 min
Sauté High Heat 5 min
Add 9 cups of rice-rinsed-water, 1 tsp of minced garlic, ½ tsp of salt and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce for soup to the pot with beef and miyeok. Boil without lid on high heat for about 30 minutes. Skim off any foam or oil on top.
Boil without lid
High Heat 30 min
6. Season and serve
Taste to season. If it’s not salty enough, add salt gradually so you don’t make it too salty. If it seems too salty, add a little bit of water and bring it to boil again. Serve with rice, kimchi and other side dishes if you like.
Taste to season