As far as summer lunches go, this is about as refreshing as it gets — slippery, chewy buckwheat noodles in an icy-cold broth that’s equal parts savory, sweet, and tangy, topped with all things crunchy and fresh, plus a creamy egg for good measure. It’s not quite as quick as this noodle lunch, but the broth is well-suited as a make-ahead meal — freeze the broth and the brisket slices ahead of time, then just prepare the toppings and noodles whenever you’re ready for the meal equivalent of a dip in the pool. It’s often served in stainless steel bowls to keep things feeling even colder and fresher, but that’s totally optional.
Dongchimi kimchi is a sweet and tangy “water kimchi” made from daikon radish. It’s a gentler, milder kimchi that doesn’t use the bright-red gochugaru pepper powder more commonly associated with kimchi. You can find it in most Korean supermarkets, either sliced or julienned — look for a variety with plenty of liquid. Or you can make your own via Maangchi!
The noodles for naengmyeon are Korean buckwheat noodles that look a bit like soba but are somewhat different in texture — Korean buckwheat noodles are usually made with some wheat flour and sweet potato starch, as well, for a springier, chewier noodle than soba. Again, you can almost always find them at Korean supermarkets (conveniently labeled “naengmyeon noodles”), or you can order them on Amazon for a higher price. (Or you can simply swap in any long noodle of your choice — I won’t tell!)
The other common way to eat these noodles is with a spicy-sweet gochujang bibim sauce, for bibim naengmyeon. I’m pumped to try my hand at that someday, but if you’re craving it now, there are plenty of recipes out there that look fantastic (like Maangchi’s!) And for something easy and similar, this bibim guksu courtesy of B2’s mom might be worth a look, too.