Recipes

Candied sweet potato

Matang 마탕

(The other recipe in this video is Ppottetto)

Matang (마탕) is a very delicious snack. It’s chunks of fried sweet potato coated in translucent hot brown syrup. They are sweet and super crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside! Freshly made matang is so hot that I used to burn my tongue when I ate it.

Don’t forget to bite into it though. You’ll enjoy the crunchiness between your upper and lower teeth, and the sweet, soft, fluffy, creamy sweet potato will be melting in your mouth. This is another easy recipe, but making good coating syrup is a little tricky and takes skill. Well made matang will look like shiny candy.

Ingredients:
1 pound of Korean sweet potato, vegetable oil, sugar, black sesame seeds

Directions:

Prepare your potato:

  1. Peel a 1 pound Korean sweet potato.
  2. Rinse  it in cold water and dry it with paper towel or cotton cloth.
  3. Slice it into chunks that look like smooth-edged triangles, about 2 inches wide and ½ inch thick.
  4. Put 5 cups of vegetable oil into a wok or frying pan and heat it up.
  5. Fry the chunks of the the sweet potato over medium high heat for about 6-8 minutes until golden brown.
    *tip: You can tell if the oil is hot enough to fry by dipping the tip of a sweet potato chunk into it. If it bubbles, it’s the right temperature to fry.

Make coating syrup:

  1. In a thick bottomed pan, add 1 tbs vegetable oil spread the oil by moving the pan around.
  2. Sprinkle ¼ cup of white sugar on over the oil evenly.
  3. Heat it up over medium heat for a couple of minutes.
  4. When the sugar starts melting, lower the heat and simmer about 7-8 minutes more, until the sugar turns into a golden-brownish syrup.
    *tip: Never stir the syrup with a spoon; spread it by moving your pan.

Put it together:

  1. Lay out a non stick sheet of baking parchment.
  2. Add the fried sweet potato to the syrup in the pan. Gently mix to coat the potato chunks in the syrup.
  3. Sprinkle some black sesame seeds over top.
  4. Transfer the potato to the parchment sheet. Leave a gap between each potato piece so that they don’t stick to each other.
  5. When the coating cools down and become solid, transfer to a serving bowl.

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42 Comments:

  1. supertwins mom DC area, USA My profile page joined 1/09
    Posted January 30th, 2014 at 3:45 pm | # |

    Dear Maangchi,
    This is my 3rd attempt. Sadly, the sauce is still turning out wrong. Could it be that I’m using the Splenda instead of regular sugar? It comes out too watery or in burnt chunks.
    I came to the U.S. when I was finished with 1st grade. Therefore, the few things I remember well about Korea are the foods. My girls had just made the Ppopgi and Hotteok during their snow days. (Thank you, by the way, for the recipes.)

  2. love merry miramar florida My profile page joined 12/13
    Posted December 9th, 2013 at 11:13 am | # |

    I love your channel so much <3 lol you can say that I'm addicted to it . I've tried to make a lot of your recipes but I only succeed in making 볶음밥 and 양념통닭 …. and today I will try 마탕 :) it look so yummy!

  3. iluvmaangchi Vancouver My profile page joined 8/13
    Posted August 29th, 2013 at 11:49 pm | # |

    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe Maangchi!! I really enjoyed making it! – The only problem was that the sauce started to burn so it wasn’t as sweet, but it was still good! I’ll make it again and next time be sure to watch the sauce! :)

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 30th, 2013 at 9:39 am | # |

      yeah, so you will have to cook the sauce really low heat. “next time be sure to watch the sauce! :)” great!

      • iluvmaangchi Vancouver My profile page joined 8/13
        Posted August 30th, 2013 at 8:11 pm | # |

        I guess that’s what I forgot to do :) – Thanks!

  4. maangchisyummyfood Vancouver My profile page joined 8/13
    Posted August 29th, 2013 at 11:42 pm | # |

    i like eating this snack with milk

  5. maangchisyummyfood Vancouver My profile page joined 8/13
    Posted August 29th, 2013 at 11:40 pm | # |

    thanks for the recipe!

  6. maangchisyummyfood Vancouver My profile page joined 8/13
    Posted August 29th, 2013 at 11:39 pm | # |

    I am eating right know! It is so good! it turned out!

  7. YeonAh Montreal, Québec My profile page joined 5/11
    Posted October 26th, 2012 at 5:51 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi! :)

    When making the sweet potato fries, do you ever season them with anything or just leave them ‘plain’? I plan on making them as a side dish tomorrow, but my little brother might need some seasoning to try them because he doesn’t like sweet potatoes. My mom wants him to eat his sweet potatoes but he never does! Hoping he’ll like them better as crunchy fries :)

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted November 29th, 2012 at 6:31 pm | # |

      “my little brother might need some seasoning to try them because he doesn’t like sweet potatoes..” oh I see what you mean. Yes, it’s up to you. You can add his favorite seasonings to this. Why not?

  8. janicedale Australia My profile page joined 2/12
    Posted May 8th, 2012 at 9:53 pm | # |

    I love sweet potato because I used to eat this for substitute to rice. It is healthy and I feel full when I eat sweet potato. I know how to make this recipe it’s simple and very good appetizer or dessert. Is it okay to use vegetable oil or olive oil for more healthy recipe, since I am on a diet??

  9. Faleria345 United States My profile page joined 1/12
    Posted February 21st, 2012 at 5:58 pm | # |

    Hey Maangchi, I just made these for me and my friend Mirei but the sugar coating didn’t harden on the sweet potato, i don’t understand what went wrong,

    the fries also came out kind of floppy instead of crunchy, i don’t normally fry things so i’m sure i did something wrong, i’ll try again though and do my best to make them into crunchy perfection.

    p.s. i love your recipes and korean food, thank you for showing us hoe to make them. :) Gamsahamnidad!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted February 22nd, 2012 at 9:16 am | # |

      answers!
      “the sugar coating didn’t harden..” cook the coating syrup longer
      “the fries also came out kind of floppy instead of crunchy” cook them longer until crunchy

      Maybe your stove is not as strong as mine. Everybody’s stove has different heat, so you will need to adjust for that.
      Let me know the result if you make this again!

      Happy cooking!

      • sweetking2 australia My profile page joined 11/12
        Posted November 29th, 2012 at 8:46 am | # |

        maangchi hi,

        I like potatoes however your cooking concept using oil and sugar was a great idea thanks…!

  10. kkat9011 Alabama My profile page joined 10/11
    Posted October 16th, 2011 at 6:59 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi!

    I found this website over the summer, and I’ve had fun trying out the different recipes. I just made the matang (the last couple are cooling off now), and I just want to say that they’re delicious! They don’t look quite as good as yours (and I couldn’t use Korean sweet potato because shopping here is horrible), but even with a “normal” sweet potato I fell in love. Thanks so much for the recipe!

  11. LoveHateVip TN My profile page joined 7/11
    Posted July 1st, 2011 at 1:38 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi :)

    Will the Matang still taste good when its cold?

  12. A.Lee Atlanta, GA My profile page joined 6/11
    Posted June 4th, 2011 at 7:51 pm | # |

    Ah…. mine didn’t turn out that beautifully… I think I used too small of a pan for the syrup. It tastes pretty good, though. Also, the timing is pretty hard to nail but I’m pretty excited about making it again. Thanks for the recipe!!!!

  13. muffinslover Australia My profile page joined 5/11
    Posted May 13th, 2011 at 12:10 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi,
    What a coincidence! Weeks ago I went to eat at this Korean buffet restaurant in Sydney and they did serve matang:) all my friends who came with me to the buffet like them and I’ve been thinking to make them but don’t have the recipe. Thank God you have this recipe.
    You are the best! I will try to make them then.
    I indeed love korean food eventhough I am not a korean.
    Thank you!!!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted May 13th, 2011 at 8:53 am | # |

      Great! Let me know how your matang turns out! Upload the photo on my website it you can. http://www.maangchi.com/photos/upload

      • muffinslover Australia My profile page joined 5/11
        Posted May 17th, 2011 at 4:52 am | # |

        Hello Maangchi,
        My matang did not turn out as it should be. The sweet coating did not cover the whole piece. Tried it twice and they turned out the same eventhough for the 2nd time I added the sugar quantity. I will send you the picture regardless. Anyway my daughter loves them and the taste was actually all right. I am not sure on where I did wrong. But I will definitely try again.
        Thanks Maangchi!!

        • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
          Posted May 17th, 2011 at 11:03 am | # |

          Yes, I saw the photo you sent me. It looks good to me!
          Follow the recipe closely and make it again. You will have to coat it when the syrup is hot, Otherwise, the fried sweet potato won’t be coated evenly. Don’t add more oil or sugar. I follow my own recipe when I make it. : )
          Let me know.

  14. Cornelia Bonn, Germany My profile page joined 3/11
    Posted March 28th, 2011 at 3:49 pm | # |

    Hey Maangchi,
    this recipe is really interesting. Just want to ask if i might put the sweet potato chunks into the oven instead of frying them?
    Or just stirfry them in a little amount of oil?

    Greetings from Bonn (Germany),

    Cornelia

  15. tyas jakarta, indonesia My profile page joined 1/11
    Posted January 16th, 2011 at 10:35 pm | # |

    Love it love it love it..!!
    i love sweet potato at all !
    yesterday night my mom made steamed sweet potatoes for night snacks,
    actually i wanted to make ur crunchy sweet potato but my sister wanted it to be steamed T.T

    so, today i’m going to make the sweet cruchy one without any interruption.. :D

  16. skim19 My profile page joined 10/10
    Posted December 29th, 2010 at 10:48 pm | # |

    Hi maangchi!
    I just tried to make this today…everything was going well until I tried to coat the potato chunks in the melted sugar!
    Everything started sticking together and wouldn’t coat properly ):
    What did I do wrong?

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted December 30th, 2010 at 11:09 am | # |

      oh my! You must have felt very frustrated! What a coincidence! I made it last night with usual sweet potatoes. It turned out ok but not as good as matang made with Korean sweet potatoes. The coating sauce made it crunchy though.

      The coating syrup cools down very quickly and gets hard, so you will have to follow the direction very tightly.
      “Transfer the potato to the parchment sheet. Leave a gap between each potato piece so that they don’t stick to each other.”

      You don’t have to use parchment paper. Put some vegetable oil on a large baking pan and place the chunks of finished coated sweet potatoes.

  17. Meegs Daejeon, South Korea My profile page joined 4/10
    Posted December 22nd, 2010 at 3:09 am | # |

    In about 2.5 months I will return to America after living in Korea for just 2 years. I am so so sad to leave all the delicious food behind, like goguma matang! BUT because of you I can make them at home and remember all my wonderful Korean experiences^^

  18. RS My profile page joined 11/10
    Posted December 17th, 2010 at 6:19 am | # |

    Looks delicious, Maangchi! And thank you for the tip about how to see if the oil is ready for frying (those bubbles!).

  19. eviLeviathanMaybe Philippines My profile page joined 4/10
    Posted December 11th, 2010 at 8:49 am | # |

    It’s the same as the Japanese Daigakuimo. Only I like this one better because it’s crunchy :)

  20. BxlSprout Brussels, Belgium My profile page joined 5/10
    Posted December 11th, 2010 at 6:10 am | # |

    Mmmm, Maangchi! I remember matang so well. It’s delicious. My family will love it!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted December 11th, 2010 at 8:23 am | # |

      I’m in Toronto now and staying in my Korean friend’s house. Last night I made matang for her family. It came out wonderful. My friend was so happy to learn how to make the coating syrup. yum!

  21. samyoowell portland, oregon My profile page joined 8/09
    Posted December 10th, 2010 at 6:09 am | # |

    i remember watching this chinese restaurant make this as desserts when i was a kid and i specifically remember them dipping the coated pieces in ice cold water. does maangchi or anybody else know about this?

  22. Alana H. My profile page joined 12/10
    Posted December 7th, 2010 at 4:10 pm | # |

    These look delicious, Maangchi! In case you are interested, “ppotetto” is the Japanese name for french fries and it IS basically them saying “potato” with their own accent, haha. The Japanese also make matang and call if “daigakuimo”, which means something like “college potato”. Not sure why, though!

  23. susannevh rotterdam, the netherland My profile page I'm a fan! joined 3/09
    Posted December 7th, 2010 at 12:22 pm | # |

    humm looks so delicious, especially the Crunchy sweet potato fries. I had them alway when we’re traving trough Korea. I hope you had a nice time

  24. davidalvarado Red Bank, NJ My profile page joined 12/10
    Posted December 7th, 2010 at 9:54 am | # |

    Mmmm….yum. I will definitely have to make these this week. Thanks for the recipe, Ms. Kim!


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