Dak Galbi: Love or Hate?

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More than a year ago, Saucer and I fell in love with this dish we found in Seoul. It was known as Dak Galbi, a traditional Korean dish prepared by stir-frying marinated chicken dices in a gochujang (chili pepper paste) based sauce, sliced cabbage, sweet potato, scallions, onions and tteok (rice cake) together on a hot plate. Once we returned from Seoul, we kept searching for this dish from the local Korean restaurants, to no avail. Someone must have heard our cries, for recently, we came to know about Uncle Jang Restaurant, that served just that – pure, unadulterated, spicy Dak Galbi!

Uncle Jang

Stir-frying marinated chicken pieces in gochujang and cabbage

Uncle Jang

The covered hot plate

Without further ado, I visited the restaurant during lunch with my colleagues when Saucer was away on his business trip. We went to the branch in Bandar Puteri Puchong, to find the place spacious and relatively quiet on a working day. The photo wall kept me entertained while we waited for our food. So many happy patrons posing in the pictures. :)

Uncle Jang

Photo wall at Uncle Jang’s

Uncle Jang

The hot plate

Before long, our order arrived, in the form of raw chicken, vegetables, rice cake and the like. There were only 2 options available, either Spicy or Non-Spicy. No prize guessing which one I ordered! :) But since I was sharing with my colleague, we played safe by mixing 1 portion of Spicy and 1 portion of Non-spicy. And we waited for the staff to cook.

Uncle Jang

The raw ingredients

Uncle Jang

The skilful staff cooking our dish

While waiting for the food to be ready, we were served some banchan in the form of kimchi and a bowl of cold sourish soup. I didn’t quite enjoy the soup but eventually found out that it’s actually useful to curb the spicy feeling after eating the dak galbi. Ah, since I’m quite the seasoned spicy-eater, I didn’t need it. :P

Uncle Jang

Refillable Kim chi and cold soup

It was definitely not easy sitting and waiting patiently for the food to be cooked while the strong aroma of gochujang attacked our senses. The smell was make us salivate non-stop, not to mention the spicy whiff that we got once in a while that caused us to choke. :P

Uncle Jang

Almost ready

Uncle Jang

Wear the bib if you don’t want to smell like Dak Galbi :P

Finally, the staff said the golden words “Please enjoy your meal”. Yes, we started to dig in like hungry beasts, almost scalding our tongue from the piping hot chicken. Oh but it was good! Just like how I remembered it from Seoul. I ate the chicken on its own. I ate it wrapped with lettuce. I even ate it with kimchi. And don’t forget the rice cakes – so chewy and bouncy! I wish there were more of those.

Uncle Jang

Ready to be eaten!

Uncle Jang

Wrap it in lettuce

We have the option of adding in side dishes if you think the main dish is not filling enough. During my first visit, I asked for Ramen and fried rice, to be shared by 2 persons. I personally enjoyed the Fried rice more, as the flavour was well absorbed within the rice and the addition of seaweed and extra gochujang made it even more tantalizing.

Uncle Jang

Fried ramen in Dak galbi

Uncle Jang

Adding the fried rice towards the end of meal

Uncle Jang

Very delicious fried rice!

After the very satisfying meal, I went home and raved to Saucer about it! Just like me, he’s a fan! Which was how we ended up at the second Uncle Jang outlet at Solaris Mont Kiara. Compared to the Puchong branch, this was certainly more crowded with a large Korean crowd. Without further ado, we ordered the same dishes that I did on my first visit, except that we asked for Udon instead of ramen.

Uncle Jang

Second visit with Saucer

I found that the Udon paired better with the Dak Galbi due to its thick and slightly chewy nature, almost like rice cake. The ramen would have been too soggy after being cooked for a while. The udon was just nice! Both of us ate and ate until Saucer’s face was red and full of perspiration! But he enjoyed it. :)

Uncle Jang

Look at the rice cakes

Uncle Jang

Adding in udon side dish

In my opinion, Dak Galbi can create either a love or hate relationship with people. You either worship and love it like we do, or dislike it for being monotonous. Really, there’s nothing else you can eat here except for Dak Galbi, unlike a full-fledged Korean restaurant.  But I urge you to try it out, because it really tastes just like the real thing back in Seoul. Of course, if you’re a first-timer, I would suggest you to go with the non-spicy version. ;)

Uncle Jang

The largely Korean crowd at Solaris Mont Kiara branch

Uncle Jang

Uncle Jang at Bandar Puteri Puchong

Each portion of Dak Galbi is priced at RM19 for non-spicy and RM22 for spicy. The side dishes of ramen and fried rice cost RM6 each, while the udon cost RM8 each. Banchan, drinking water and coffee are unlimited and complimentary. And there’s no tax! :)

Uncle Jang

Uncle Jang at Bandar Puteri Puchong

Uncle Jang Korean Restaurant (Puchong)
No,1-1, Jalan Puteri 1/7,
Bandar Puteri, 47100 Puchong,
Selangor, Malaysia
Tel No.: +603-8051 2208
Business Hours: 12pm – 3pm, 6pm – 11pm (except Tuesday: 6pm – 11pm only)

Uncle Jang Korean Restaurant (Solaris) – Above Maybank Solaris Mont Kiara
No 11-3 & 13-3, Jalan Solaris 1,
Mont Kiara,
50480 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel No.: +603-6211 2536
Business Hours: 12pm – 3pm, 6pm – 11pm
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/unclejang

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Comments

  1. says

    i like that wall too.. haha, so facebook huh, with all the photos and messages~~ hmmm, but how nice if the boss himself is cooking for us instead of the trained staff (who might know only very little of korea)..

  2. says

    Oh…u came to bandar puteri Uncle Jang. I’m staying nearby that’s why I went there alot too…
    Love it very much and I did recommend it to every guest that come to visit me :)

  3. says

    propose this to me sis when she ask my suggestion for tomorrow dinner but kena rejected because limited choices, she prefer Korean BBQ :P

    Happy New Year to u & Saucer :)

  4. says

    oooo, i usually don’t order dak galbi. but this looks tempting enough to try! will check out the solaris branch sometime then! and yes, non-spicy for me, heh :D

  5. says

    OMG! Your post save my life!
    I have been cravings for this type of dak galbi since my Korea trip years ago!
    The hot plate is exactly the same in Korea.
    Will definitely try this.

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