As temperatures drop this month in Korea, sales of odeng (오뎅) fish cake soup, will surely be rising. This cheap, hot and tasty street snack is a staple for students and workers alike. It’s also known as eomukguk.

Costing around 500 KRW a piece, the soft fish cake is rolled up on the wooden skewer and boiled in a miso-based broth. As this blogger notes, the soup is known to be a hangover cure, and most Koreans will eat a few skewers and slurp up the broth too.

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Odeng also featured recently in K-drama Shopping King Louis, where the streetwise Bok Shil is educating Louis, a privileged chabol with memory loss, in how Koreans eat on a budget. Much of the drama was filmed in Busan, which is famous for its fish cake, but you can pick up this street snack anywhere in Korea.

Or make your own! Here’s Aeri’s Kitchen with a simple kelp-based soup version.

Bonus: here’s a mukbang where frozen prepared odeng is cooked up with udon noodles!


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British writer and editor living in Japan. Currently studying Japanese, Korean, K-pop dance, and the fine form of 이성종's legs.