Spicy Tofu and Zucchini Stew


Sommelier Annie Shi, co-owner of King in New York City, grew up going to Korean restaurants with her family. Memories of dishes like Soondubu Jjigae, a spicy Korean tofu stew, became inspiration for a quick and easy stew of tofu and vegetables that she makes for cozy weeknight dinners. Anna Theoktisto's rendition of Shi's recipe features an umami-rich broth powered by Korean fermented soybean paste and a smart shortcut dashi (made using a store-bought sachet filled with dried anchovies, shrimp, and kelp). Shi likes to pair this tofu stew with Beaujolais: "Beaujolais has an incredible ability to cut through spice, and the brambly red fruit complements stronger flavors. I like to serve my Beaujolais with a good chill to bring out the freshness—another wonderful point of contrast to the savory stew."

Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
40 mins


  • 1 (16-ounce) package firm tofu

  • 5 cups water

  • 1 (0.6-ounce) packet dried mixed seafood, anchovy, and dashi (such as GS Plus Seafood)

  • 3 tablespoons doenjang (fermented soybean paste)

  • 3 tablespoons gochujang

  • 2 teaspoons gochugaru, plus more for garnish

  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced (about 2 teaspoon)

  • 1 large garlic clove, minced

  • 2 cups shredded napa cabbage

  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/8-inch-thick half-moons (about 13/4 cups)

  • 1 small white onion, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 cup)

  • 4 large scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces

  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

  • Toasted sesame oil, for garnish

  • Cooked white rice and kimchi, for serving


  1. Cut tofu block in half crosswise. Drain half of tofu block; reserve remaining half for another use. Cut drained tofu into 1- x 1/2- x 1/2-inch rectangles; set aside.

  2. Bring 5 cups water to a simmer in a medium Dutch oven over medium. Add dashi packet; simmer, covered, 10 minutes. Uncover. Discard dashi packet. Add doenjang, gochujang, gochugaru, ginger, and garlic; stir until doenjang and gochujang dissolve, about 1 minute. Increase heat to medium-high. Gently stir in tofu, cabbage, zucchini, and white onion; cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes. Add scallions and salt; cook just until zucchini, onion, and scallions are cooked through but still crisp, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Divide stew among 4 bowls. Drizzle with sesame oil. Garnish with additional gochugaru. Serve with rice and kimchi.

    Spicy Tofu and Zucchini Stew
    Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Suggested Pairing

Fresh, raspberry-scented Beaujolais: Domaine Jean-Claude Lapalu Beaujolais-Villages Vieilles Vignes


Find dashi packets, gochugaru, doenjang, and gochujang at Korean grocery stores or sehoonyolomall.com.

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