Recipes

Spicy raw fish soup

Mulhoe 물회

When I stayed in Puerto Escondido, Mexico, I was very excited to be able to buy fresh fish on the beach every morning. The fish sold from fishermen’s boats were so fresh that some were still alive! I bought tuna and Spanish mackerel.

I decided to make mulhoe, something that I had been longing to make for many years but couldn’t, simply because I couldn’t find extremely fresh fish where I live. My dream came true once I saw the fish in Mexico.

I wanted to share this delicious special food with my new friends that I made there. I asked my friend Bob:

“Do you like raw fish? If so, I would like to invite you to brunch!”

He said: “Does a fish like water?” : )

I’ve always believed  food is more delicious when it’s shared with many people. The more, the better, especially any dish with raw fish. I wouldn’t like to chew raw fish alone by myself in a dark room. It already sounds miserable!

When I came home to New York, I made mulhoe again with top quality hoe (sashimi) grade tuna from the freezer section of a Korean grocery store. It turned out great! The photos below are from the day I made mulhoe in New York.

To fully enjoy this dish, I recommend you make it with noodles: set out small bowls for everyone and let them serve themselves. They should put  some spicy cold mulhoe in their bowl and add cooked thin noodles. The soup should be freezing cold and the taste is supposed to be spicy, sour, and a little sweet. You can use more or less hot pepper paste, sugar, or vinegar in this recipe, according to your taste.

Anybody who loves ceviche will love this dish. When you serve this with noodles, it will make a nice simple meal. Enjoy the recipe!

Ingredients (for 4 servings):
1 pound of fresh fish (or frozen sashimi grade fish), hot pepper paste, hot pepper flakes, sugar, salt, vinegar, onion, garlic, lettuce, tomato, green chili peppers, roasted sesame seeds, sesame oil, water, and thin noodles.

Directions:

  1. Slice 1 pound of fresh fish into thin strips ¼ inch wide and 2½ inch long (about 0.5 cm wide and 6 cm long) and keep it in the refrigerator.
  2. Put 10 cups of water into a large pot. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  3. When the water boils 15-20 minutes later, add 200 grams of thin noodles (somyeon). Stir with a wooden spoon to prevent the noodles from sticking to each other.
  4. Cook the noodles with the lid closed for a few minutes.
  5. Taste a sample. The noodle shouldn’t have anything hard inside, but it shouldn’t be mushy.
  6. When the noodles are finished, drain and rinse them in cold water a couple of times until they’re cold and a little chewy. Drain them and set aside.

Make the cold broth:

  1. In a bowl, mix 4-5 cloves minced garlic, ¼ cup hot pepper paste, 2 tbs hot pepper flakes, 2 tbs sugar, 1 tbs kosher salt, ¼ cup vinegar, 2 tbs sesame oil, and 2 tbs roasted sesame seeds powder. Mix with a spoon.
  2. Thinly slice ½ cup’s worth of onion and ¼ cup’s worth of carrot. Slice 1 tomato, chop 3-4 green chili peppers and 2 cups’ worth of chopped lettuce, and add to the broth.
  3. Add 2 cups of ice cold water. Mix well then set aside.
    *tip: If you want to add ice cubes, use 1 cup of water and 1 cup of ice cubes.
  4. Add fish strips to the broth and mix well.
  5. Serve with the cooked noodles.

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