Bubbling Spicy Tofu

April 7, 2018

One of the things I miss most about LA is Beverly Soon Tofu, which I’ve been going to since it really was on Beverly Boulevard (the restaurant moved to Olympic Boulevard thirty years ago).  There is nothing more comforting than a big bubbling bowl of soondobu jiggae.

This is how it works.

You walk into the small restaurant and put your name on the list.  Then you wait for an empty table.

When your turn finally comes you slip into one of the backless stools and decide how you want your tofu stew: there are many permutations- vegetarian, pork, shrimp, even spicy cod roe.  Then you decide your level of heat; go for the hot, which isn’t painful.

Then you wait.

The first thing that arrives are these cool, clean little slices of tofu.

Then the panchan:

Finally you hear a furious boiling, bubbling and hissing and the waitress appears with your sizzling dinner, which spits angrily as she cracks a raw egg into the middle.

And then you eat, slowly and blissfully.

If there is a better $12 meal, I haven’t had it.

 

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