Long, cylinder-shaped rice cake

Garaetteok 가래떡

Hello everybody!

Today I’ll show you how to make a homemade Korean rice cake called garaetteok.

Most of you know what tteok means, right? That’s rice cake. But what about garae? What is it, and what does it have to do with this rice cake?

There are a few theories about that. One of them is that garae comes from the verb gaeuda which means “to divide.” Some people think this rice cake got its name because it’s always “divided” into pieces before it’s rolled and stretched.

garaeThe other theory is the name comes from a Korean farming tool called a garae, which is a type of spade. A garae has 2 thick ropes attached to the side of it so that 2 helpers can pull the ropes and make the digging go faster.

Some people think those ropes look a lot like garaetteok, which is how the rice cake got its name.

I had never made homemade garaetteok until I developed this recipe for my website, but when I was growing up in Korea, I watched my grandmother in Korea make it once. I remember her pounding the rice cake with her long wooden pestle in her large stone mortar. Kong kong kong! When she was finished pounding it was elastic, chewy, and soft. Then she started rolling out pieces of it with her hands.

Rolling and stretching, rolling and stretching, until it became long like a rope.

I must have watched her pretty closely because my memories of her working are very vivid! And I also remember her huge smile when she saw me watching her. It was not easy work, and she probably sweat a lot, but she ever frowned.

Developing this recipe, I realized how much hard work it must have been for her. I have a microwave to help me, and I am only making a small amount. She made a lot more, and all by hand. Now I really understand how much work it was, and she still had the energy to give me a smile.

Several hours after she made it, the rice cake would get a little dry and hard. Then she cut it into thin discs for rice cake soup. I remember that she used to cut it straight across, not diagonally, so each rice cake looked exactly like a coin.

I miss her and I miss her smile. She passed away long time ago.

You can use a microwave or a steamer to make garaetteok, whichever one you have at home and feel comfortable with. The dough ratio is a little different depending on which method you use, so be sure to use the right one.

After it’s made, you can cut and prepare it for tteokbokki or tteokguk. Both methods are described below.

A note about short grain rice flour: the flour you buy at your local store or the flour you make may have more or less moisture in it than the rice flour I use in this recipe. This is because of many different things like how long it’s been in the freezer in the store, or the atmospheric conditions where you live. You may need to add more or less boiling water, depending on how dry or wet your short grain rice flour is.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of short grain rice flour (buy it frozen, or make your own)
  • ½ ts kosher salt
  • ¾ cup of boiling water if using a microwave, 1 cup of boiling water if using a steamer (you may need more or less depending on how much moisture is in your short grain rice flour, see the note above)
  • 1 ts toasted sesame oil

Directions

  1. If you bought frozen rice flour from a Korean grocery store, put it in the fridge overnight until it thaws out and the flour becomes a powder. If you made your own rice flour, you don’t need to do this

Making rice cake with a microwave:

  1. Combine the rice flour, kosher salt, and boiling water in a bowl. It should have the consistency of the mixture in this photo:rice-cake-dough
  2. Cover it with plastic wrap, leaving a small gap to let the steam release. Microwave for 2 minutes.
  3. Mix the rice cake dough with a rice scoop or wooden spoon.
  4. Re-cover with the plastic wrap and cook for another 2 minutes.
  5. Spread ½ ts toasted sesame oil on your cutting board. Put the hot rice cake in the oily spot on the cutting board. Pound it with a pestle for about 5 minutes, until it becomes smooth and elastic.ricecake-poundingricecake-folding

Making rice cake with a steamer:

  1. Combine the rice flour, kosher salt, and boiling water in a bowl.
  2. Line a steamer rack with parchment paper. Add the rice cake dough and steam for about 25 minutes over hight heat.
  3. Spread ½ ts toasted sesame oil on your cutting board. Put the hot rice cake in the oily spot on the cutting board. Pound it with a pestle for about 5 minutes, until it becomes smooth and elastic. The rest of process is the same as the  method of using a microwave oven.ricecake_steamingricecake_steamedricecaked_pounding

Prepare the rice cake for ddeokbokki:

  1. Cut it into 8 equal pieces, then roll each piece out into a 4 inch long cylinder shaped rice cake.
  2. Put ½ ts toasted sesame oil onto your hands and gently rub the rice cakes to coat them in a thin sheen of oil. This will give them a nice flavor and keep them from sticking to each other.ricecakerice cakerice cake

Prepare the rice cake for ddeokguk (rice cake soup):

  1. Cut it into 2 equal pieces, then roll each piece out into two 10 inch long cylinder shaped rice cakes.
  2. Let them cool at room temperature for several hours, then slice diagonally into thin discs.
  3. Use right away, or put in a plastic bag and freeze for later use. This amount is for 1 serving of ddeokguk, so if you want to make two bowls of soup, make two batches.

garaetteok

garaeddeok

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269 Comments:

  1. NINA14 joined 4/15 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi.. im from Malaysia
    I wanted to know if i add 1 cup of rice flour… so i have to put half of the all ingredients?
    Thnkss

  2. natnet joined 5/15 & has 1 comment

    Thanks for sharing~
    I would like to know 1 cup of flour equal to how many g? Thanks!

  3. medusagurlyeah Adelaide joined 1/14 & has 32 comments

    Hi Maangchi, Been watching too much Aririang! Are you able to do a video on making the various types of tteok for special occasions or fun decorations? Like Sirutteok?

  4. Mikhael Philippines joined 3/15 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangchi :) I tried to do my own, it tastes great but every time I try to roll it out and make cylinders, it returns to its original form and it’s color really isn’t white, it’s darker..T_T could you help me please? thank you!!!

  5. hsha malaysia joined 3/15 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangchi i tried to make this but it turned out to be powdery and doesnt taste like any rice cake that i’ve tried before. I did follow step by step but still failed to make it … :(

  6. galihp Yogyakarta, Indonesia joined 2/15 & has 2 comments

    hi maangchi! i tried to make it last weekend. But after steaming it, the dough turned out too hard so it cant be pounded easily. Then should i add more or less water?

  7. galihp Yogyakarta, Indonesia joined 2/15 & has 2 comments

    maangchi how long the time you need to pound the dough? i made it today but it wasnt chewy :(

  8. seraphin alaska joined 1/15 & has 1 comment

    알래스카에서는 구하기어려운 …아니 비싸서 잘못사먹는 가래떡인데 ㅜㅜ 언니덕분에 쌀가루로 완성할수있겠어요!!!! 마지막에 절구로 쳐줘야하는걸 몰랐어서 늘 실패했었는데 다음번에는 성공!!하겠습니다 감사합니다

  9. waleria002 Russia joined 1/15 & has 4 comments

    hello. I love your site. you are very accessible explain cooking Korean dishes. But here a year, I can not cook rice dough. Russia does not sell frozen flour. But we sell simple dry rice flour. As of dry flour dough to make it? I have a lot of rice flour spoiled, but I have nothing.

  10. kimanh Vietnam joined 12/14 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi, I really enjoy your recipes and Korean foods as well, especially Tokkboki and kimchi. I’m just wondering if I want to double the recipe in this video (I make it at one time) So does the microwave time get any longer? Thanks from Vietnam! :)

  11. sophiau1 Canada joined 11/14 & has 1 comment

    I was wondering if I could use regular rice cake flour instead of short grain rice flour since that is what I have on hand..if you could answet ASAP then that would be awesome!

  12. Lome France joined 11/14 & has 2 comments

    Hi Mangchi ! I tried your recipe from scratch, made my own flour (with round Japanese rice, round rice for desert and round rice for risotto… I hadn’t enough of each to use only one sort) so I wasn’t really sure I would make it right. I read all the comment and I found lot of answers so when I found my flour wasn’t ground enough I knew it would be possible to compensate by pounding it long and hard. When I added the boiling water I saw it would be ok and I was really happy. Now my cakes are resting before I could cut it into pieces. I found it a little small but I doubt it would be a problem. I have homemade kimchi and nearly all ingredients to make army base stew. Can’t wait ! My boyfriend watched the stew video while salivating greatly, he is impatient too ^^ thank you for your recipes !

  13. __sawaa Saudi Arabia joined 8/14 & has 3 comments

    Maangchi ,
    I bought some ddeok and it was broken when i make ddeokbokki with it , it’s melt or stick to the bottom i’m not sure if there is a method to reshape it but if there please tell me :(

  14. elgowh Indonesia joined 8/14 & has 1 comment

    Hello Maangchi,
    I buy pre-made rice cake from local supermarket. But the size is too thick, the diameter is too large. what should I do to make it thinner? should I steam it first and then roll it again with sesame oil?
    thank you

  15. FATH pahang, malaysia joined 8/14 & has 1 comment

    hye maangchi, I want to ask, yesterday I make garaetteok but why when I cook tteokbokki not chewy? or i over water? i make it step by step..2 cup short rice and 1 cup water..

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

      oh,you steamed it! Add less than 1 cup boiling water, depending on the wetness of your rice flour. I added this to the recipe recently. Check it out, please. “A note about short grain rice flour: the flour you buy at your local store or the flour you make may have more or less moisture in it than the rice flour I use in this recipe. This is because of many different things like how long it’s been in the freezer in the store, or the atmospheric conditions where you live. You may need to add more or less boiling water, depending on how dry or wet your short grain rice flour is.”

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