curry doria


I’m a Korean-American girl. I grew up eating a mixture of home cooked Korean meals and restaurant-bought or homemade Midwestern, American meals (at friends’ houses) along with processed American food. I think I’m adventurous and pretty open-minded about flavors. But something that trips me up sometimes is fusion food. Especially a fusion of the Asian and American flavors. Sometimes it works well like korritos (Korean burritos). Flavorful meat with kimchi instead of salsa…that works for me. Kimchi pasta? It was strange at first but I’ve since come around. But putting white, Asian sticky rice with cheese on it, I have a harder time reconciling those flavors.  To me, white rice and cheese don’t really go together! But I saw this recipe for curry doria and I was thoroughly intrigued.  My family LOVES Japanese style curry.  It’s their ultimate comfort food.  In fact, after holiday meals, they often want a simple bowl of curry rice the next day, as if to cleanse their palates. I was feeling a bit adventurous one day and didn’t want to make the same ol’ curry rice and came across this recipe. I thought at the very least, maybe the family would like it, even if I didn’t like it. But we all loved this dish! It was warm, comforting and familiar…but the cheesy topping reminded me of a casserole or baked pasta. Not what I’d pair with the white rice underneath but they really did complement each other!

Whenever we have some kind of curry leftover, I always have to beg the kids to please NOT take it to lunch but to instead wait until the following evening to eat the leftovers. Their mouths and stomachs want it so badly but I know the smell of a curry lunch at school could cause lots of unwelcome comments and/or wrinkled noses!! I tell them even if THEY don’t care, we should still be conscious of other people eating their lunch. As an elementary school student I would never have dreamed of taking something so “exotic” to my school for lunch. I’m glad my kids live in an area where it wouldn’t cause bullying or ridicule, just some comments about stinkiness and pungent smells!  I hope you give this a try. Even if it seems a bit of an unlikely pairing, it’s quite delicious!

Curry Doria

recipe from Just One Cookbook, minor tweaks by me

Prep time 10 mins
Cook time 30 mins
Total time 40 mins
  • 3 cups short grain rice
  • ½ large onion
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 1 small carrot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. curry powder
  • 1 ½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 Tbsp. Tonkatsu sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • ½ cup Mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup Romano cheese
  • 2 Tbsp. panko breadcrumbs
  1. Preheat oven to the broil setting.
  2. Cook rice.  I use short grain and cook it in the rice cooker!
  3. Mince the onion, celery, and carrot into even, small pieces.
  4. Heat olive oil over medium heat and add garlic and the bay leaf.
  5. Saute minced onion and celery over medium high heat until they are almost translucent.
  6. Add carrot and cook until tender.
  7. Add the meat and break it up, stirring occasionally. Cook until the meat is no longer pink.  Season dish with salt and pepper, to taste.
  8. Add the curry powder and broth. If the liquid doesn’t cover the ingredients, you will need to add more broth or water.
  9. Cover with the lid and bring to a boil. Once boiling, uncover and skim off the scum from the top, if any. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook for 5 minutes.
  10. Add the tonkatsu sauce, ketchup and 1 Tbsp. of the butter. The meat mixture may be a bit on saltier side but you’ll put putting it over rice, so make sure it’s well seasoned. Cook and reduce the sauce until you see the bottom of the pan, about 10 minutes, and turn off the heat.
  11. Use butter or cooking spray to grease the sides and bottom of the baking dish. Place the steamed rice on bottom of the dish and then layer the meat on top of the rice.  Top with both cheeses and sprinkle panko on top.
  12. Broil for 2-3 minutes until the cheese has melted and you see nice char on top.



instant pot dduk guk (korean rice cake soup)


I have anxieties when it comes to new appliances. I feel like I need to really know how to use it before I can try it on my own.  When we have new appliances, my  husband is the type to just turn it on and go with his intuition.  I read the manual!!  When I got my Instant Pot, I had heard good things about it but I was very apprehensive about this thing that could (in my imagination) blow up on me!!! It took me a few months after I bought it to even take it out of the box and then I watched a few tutorials on youtube on how to use the darn thing so I could have an overview of how the darn thing worked.  One day, I decided to just try it and make ribs of all things and it turned out great! While watching more tutorials and reading more recipes, I got a better sense of my Instant Pot.  And I loved it!  Baked potato? No problem! Jook? Yes!  One pot pasta that saved my butt during soccer season? Absolutely!  It was definitely worth the purchase.

I stayed up a little late on New Year’s Eve and had some champagne so I set my alarm and decided to try Instant Pot to make the beef soup part of the traditional Korean rice cake soup (dduk guk) that is often served on New Year’s Day.  The plan was to then move it and finish the final steps on the stovetop, adding the rice cakes and potstickers (mandoo).  Well, I also happened to win tickets to my first NFL game (Go Niners!) so I was under some time constraints.  The meat came out so well, that I decided to just throw the still semi-hard rice cakes into the instant pot and hasten the results.  I could not find a single recipe online for this and had no guidance – just a gut feeling. So I threw them in, added some time on the pot and gathered everyone for the bowing ceremony.  After we bowed, I had my husband cook up the mandoo that we were adding to the soup and I started the quick release.  OH NO.  Sputtering white liquid everywhere!  Like the mishaps on the facebook Instant Pot group!  I panicked and started imagining disintegrated rice cake soup inside.  I didn’t know what to do but keep cleaning up the volcanic -like liquid.  Did I mention my MOTHER IN LAW is visiting ??? And she’s a tough critic?? OMG, no pressure.  Well, I fearfully announced that I may have ruined our New Year’s meal and waited for the pressure to go down. Apprehensively, I finally opened the pot to find the rice cake floating on the top- not a mushy mess ! Yay!!  I served it up and everyone said it was the best dduk mandoo guk they have ever had.  WHOA and WHEW!

This may not seem like a very big deal to people but to recipe-following me, it was nothing short of a miracle. I’m proud of myself for taking a risk and trying it out and it worked out for me! So I’m going to share it with you.  It was nice to drink coffee and read a book while the Instant Pot did the majority of the work for me – the beef broth!  Thank you for all the people who have read my little blog last year.  It has been a fun journey for me and I hope to continue sharing my recipes with you in 2017!



Serves 6-8


1 lb. Beef (I used about a pound of chuck roast but any beef roast or stew meat or london broil is ok – even short ribs!)

1 package of korean rice cakes (often vacuum sealed packages)

4 Green onion/scallions, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

Sesame seeds

Drizzle of sesame oil

Salt and pepper

For garnish, 2 eggs and unroasted seaweed sheet

Note: My family enjoys this soup with mandoo and in a pinch, my husband picked up pork potstickers from Trader Joe’s and it was great! We used 2 packages for 6 people.


  • Soak rice cakes in cold water for 30 minutes..
  • Put beef in Instant pot and fill with water to fill line.  Close lid and close the vent to “sealing”.  Set on manual for 32 minutes.
  • While this is cooking, you can make the garnish.  Cut the seaweed into thin strips and cook the eggs evenly and thinly in a fying pan. Slice it into thin strips and set it aside. Some folks use just egg yolk – I’m lazy and just cook the whole egg.
  • Quick release once the time has ended.
  • Take out beef. Shred and mix it with green onion, garlic, sesame seeds, sesame oil, salt and pepper.
  • Reserve half of the seasoned beef for garnishing the soup at the end and put the other half back into the broth. (Note: I took out some of the broth at this point so I could add rice cakes and still be under the fill line).
  • Drain the rice cakes and add to the Instant Pot.
  • Let the rice cakes soften in the hot soup for a few minutes.

NOTE: If you’re making the potstickers, I recommend boiling them separately on the stove and adding them to the soup once it’s done. I have no suggestions on how to incorporate this into the Instant Pot!

  • Season to taste with salt. Start with a tablespoon and keep tasting!
  • To serve, ladle a portion of the rice cake soup in a bowl, add potstickers and top with reserved seasoned beef, egg strips and seaweed strips.

This is my first attempt at writing a recipe so please bear with me and let me know if anything is unclear or needs clarification!  I hope yours turns out like mine did.  My husband was VERY wary of having the rice cakes cook so long but it turned out just fine for us.  Remember to take out liquid before adding rice cakes!!!