Korean street food

By Maangchi

My reader Ms. Sandy sent me this photo to ask me what it is.When I saw that, it reminded me of my elementary school days. I think some of you may remember this street food, too.I’m quoting Ms. Sandy’s email and my answer here with the photo.

Sandy says:

“Can you help me with the identity of this Korean snack?
I know it’s a snail, but I don’t know what kind or its Korean name.

I remember having it as a child in Korea (my all time favorite snack…well, tied with Bokie, Duk Bok Kie, raw sea cucumber, and some kind of honey/syrupy snack that you squeezed out of a toy syringe as part of a doctor themed candy package.

But back to the snails…when I was a girl, they use to sell them in newspaper cones and were usually seen on the same cart as bun da ge. The more civilized Koreans (usually adults) would use a toothpick to gently tease out the meat, but my friends and I would usually just bite the tip off the sharp, spiral end; turn it around; and suck the meat out through the front opening.

I browsed the internet trying to find a description, but was only successful in finding this picture (everything else was describing much bigger moonsnails or whelks). Any help is much appreciated.

I say:

“I can’t help laughing while reading your message. Your explanation is very exact and descriptive. Of course I know what it is!

It’s cold “Go dong”in korean. Would you mind if I used your picture and your description on my blog? Some people may be very interested in looking at the photo. You said, “honey/syrupy snack that you squeezed out of a toy syringe as part of a doctor themed candy package” haha! I remember it. It’s kind of street junk food.
Thank you for the photo and entertaining description. : ) “


  1. Bill Bartmann& has 1 comment

    Cool site, love the info.

  2. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

    Hi, may,
    I can not read the food you mention in your comment. Do you mean “dduk bok kie”? If so, I already posted in this blog with written recipe. Check it out.

  3. hello maangchi! i have been following your videos on youtube and they’re all fantastic xDD
    in regards to this post, i’m wondering how to make 뽑기 (bokie??) ?? i know it’s easy and basically consists of sugar, but what else and what kind of sugar should i use???
    i would really like to give it a go ;-)
    thanks a lot!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

    I don’t remember seeing watercress in Korea when I was there.

  5. Hello Maangchi,

    Is watercress avaliable in Korea? Do koreans eat watercress?

  6. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

    Go dong is on the left. bundaegi(silkworms) is on the right.

    I don’t know how they harvest them such a huge amount of “go dong”
    My aunt used to gather go dong on rocks at the beach near her house.
    It was a different kind of go dong from the ones in this photo.

  7. Are there two different ways of preparing go dong in this photo? Also, they’re so small, how do people harvest so many of them?

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