Kalguksu (Doenjang Chicken Soup with Korean Knife-Cut Noodles) Recipe

Chewy, hand-cut potato noodles and a slightly sweet, spicy broth make for a fresh and restorative soup.
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Servings: 2
Prep time: 25 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes


for the noodles: 
1 medium russet potato 
1 cup|140 grams all-purpose flour 
1 tablespoon vegetable oil 
1 teaspoon kosher salt 

for the soup: 
2 tablespoons vegetable oil 
1 tablespoon thinly sliced garlic, plus 2 teaspoons grated garlic 
1 teaspoon julienned ginger 
5 scallions, whites and greens separated, thinly sliced
1 boneless skinless chicken thigh, cut into ½-inch thick strips
kosher salt, to taste  
2 teaspoons doenjang 
3 tablespoons mirin
1 ½ cups|355 ml low-sodium chicken broth 
1 piece kelp (optional) 
2 teaspoons soy sauce, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon fish sauce, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon sesame oil, plus more for drizzling  
1 teaspoon white vinegar 
2-3 Thai green chilies or ½ jalapeno, thinly sliced 
toasted seaweed, to serve
toasted sesame seeds, to serve
chili crisp, preferably Momofuko Chili Crunch, to serve



  1. Make the noodles: Poke holes in the potato and steam in the microwave until cooked through, 9 to 13 minutes. Peel and smash the potato with a fork. Set aside ¼ cup|70 grams, saving the rest for another use. 
  2. Add the flour, oil, salt, and ¼ cup|60 ml water and knead until a smooth dough forms, about 5 minutes. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. 
  3. Make the soup: Place the vegetable oil, sliced garlic, the ginger, and scallion whites in a medium saucepan. Starting from cold, heat over high until the garlic just starts to turn golden, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken and season with salt. When the chicken is about halfway cooked, lower the heat to medium and add the doenjang. Toast for 30 seconds, then deglaze with the mirin. Cook until the mirin has almost evaporated, about 1 minute, then add the chicken broth and kelp (if using) and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, add the soy sauce, fish sauce, and sesame oil and simmer until the vegetables are tender. Keep warm.
  4. Meanwhile, roll out the noodles. On a lightly floured surface, roll the noodles into a 12-inch circle, as thin as linguine. Roll the noodles into a log and cut through very thinly with a knife. Separate the noodles, dusting off any excess flour, and add them to the broth. 
  5. Cook until the noodles are 80% cooked, about 2 minutes. Add the grated garlic, chilies, and white vinegar. Remove from the heat and let stand for a few minutes before serving. Garnish with the scallion greens, chili crunch, and a drizzle of sesame oil. Break some toasted seaweed over the top and sprinkle on some sesame seeds to serve. 

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