I made this for my husband's birthday. I'm not as skilled at making Korean comfort foods for my hubby as I'd like to be, but this was easy and delicious. He was so excited when he came home from work and saw what I was making. If you start adding too many things (I think) it takes away from the beautiful simplicity of the dish. I guess I can sorta see why someone could say it was bland, but this soup (as with most Korean food) is meant to be eaten with kim chi (or that's how we do it anyway). The spicy cabbage served at room temp is the perfect compliment to the hot, savory broth. Eee, thanks!
I made this soup for my Korean homestay student today. Actually, I started by following the recipe, but it took on a life of its own. I thought the stock made with just anchovies and water was very bland, watery, and just didn't have all that much flavour. I added 1 T of dashi (Japanese fish stock granules) which added a lot of flavour. I also did not have any green onion or beef. I substituted chicken for the beef and added a head of chopped baby bok choy after the egg had set in the soup. I also soaked, then sliced, 6 shitake mushrooms and added them and the soaking liquid about half-way through the cooking time. The end-result was very good and my homestay student was one happy camper! My rating is based on the changes I made to the stock. If I had followed the recipe to the letter, it would have rated only 1 star, maybe 2, the stock was that bland! In my opinion it's the stock that makes or breaks a soup! I hope my comments are helpful.