Food/ Recipes

Hobak Juk – 호박죽

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(Korean Pumpkin Porridge)

The first time I made this porridge I did it as part of an “elimination”diet. (An elimination diet is the process of limiting your diet to foods that are less likely associated with food sensitivities and slowly introducing foods one at a time to see how your body responds).  Squashes and pumpkins are considered an acceptable vegetable for someone who is trying to isolate a food sensitivity because there are less reported allergies to them.

I found many different recipes online, but  this was the one I used when I first tried making Korean Pumpkin Porridge.

Now that I am living in the U.S. I actually crave Korean food; a lot. It’s strange. This afternoon I was totally in the Korean state of mind because I made Hobak Juk and Kimchi while my daughter was napping. I saw the Kabocha squash at the grocery store and I just HAD to buy it. I didn’t have any rice flour on hand so I thought it was a good time to try a paleo version.

1 small kabocha squash
Water – 3/4  water (to mix with the squash)
Water – 2/3 cup to mix with the almond flour
Almond flour – 1/8 cup
Honey – 1 tbs


I have tried preparing the Kabocha squash in many different ways. Today I cut it in half and scooped out the seeds before baking it. It worked well this time. I have also removed the seeds after baking, and that worked too.

1. Cut the Kabocha squash in half, and remove all the seeds.
2. Bake the Kabocha squash in a large casserole dish for 1 hour at 350 F. (You can wrap each piece in aluminum foil if you want. I try to avoid aluminum foil most of the time now).
3. When the squash is done baking, let it cool. (I let it cool for close to an hour so it was easy to handle. It scooped out very easily). I actually weighed the puree to see how much I had. These squashes come in many different sizes, so I wanted results that are reproducible. I had 12 ounces of puree.
4. Then scoop out the squash and plop it into a Vitamix or high powered blender. Add 3/4 cup of water, and 1 TBS of honey and puree it until smooth. (It was just barely liquid enough to blend).
5.  In a bowl, mix 1/4 cup sweet almond flour and 2/3 cup water. Pour this into the Vitamix and blend it using the soup setting. -OR-
6.  Transfer the pureed pumpkin into a sauce pan and heat it up until warm.
7. Pour the soup into a bowl and top it with just a “pinch” of nutmeg. (This is not very Korean, but it is delicious).

I have made this soup a few times now, but this time the consistency and sweetness was PERFECT! It reminded me of custard.

If you can’t find the Kabocha squash, you can try using a Butternut squash instead. (I haven’t tried that yet but I plan on it).

The traditional recipe to make Hobak Juk  uses rice flour, and can include azuki beans and rice flour dumplings called “saeare” too. If you want the traditional recipe, here is the link to another recipe.




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