Tteokguk for a New Year and a New Start
When I was younger, I didn’t understand the restorative, purifying effect of tteokguk. Maybe I didn’t even feel like I deserved it. This year, I welcome it.
This is , a monthly column by Noah Cho about how food and cooking can inform our identities.
MaybeI’m ready to cook again
Noah Cho teaches middle-school English in the San Francisco Bay Area. His writing has appeared on NPR's CodeSwitch, Shondaland, The Atlantic, and The Toast. He spends most of his free time going on hikes with and taking photos of his doggo, Porkchop. Find him on Twitter @noahreservation and Instagram @noahreservations
More by this author
Soleil Ho, San Francisco Chronicle’s Restaurant Critic, on Food, Fusion, and What’s Often Lost in Translation
“Dealing with someone else’s culture, someone else’s media, and trying to Americanize it is something I can’t understand.”
“I found myself dwelling on these parts of Korean culture as a way to reconnect with my identity and also the memory of my mom.”
More in this series
I used to imagine having a Korean mother, someone rich in stories and jokes about Korean food and culture. My Korean mom would, ideally, be Maangchi.
Ramen is comfort food, a thing to soak up your regrets and get you through a rough day. But my favorite way to enjoy it has courted great controversy among my friends and family.