No. 87, Hodo Gwaja at Cocohodo
Hey, kids: guess what time is it? It's time to restart that Long March known as 100 Favorite Dishes (INSERT YEAR). YEAH!!!
Hey, don't ding us for listicles: Weekly DataLab studies show ustedes love this gimmick, launched in honor of our coming Best Of issue. Besides, it is rather fun to do this for us Forkers--an opportunity to highlight dishes from restaurants we'll never fully review, or secrets from old standbys. Anyhoo, let the march begin...
The first question you will ask yourself passing by this branch of Cocohodo is "What the heck is a Cocohodo?"
The second question you will ask yourself when you find out they sell walnut pastries is "What the heck is a walnut pastry?"
Soon you find out that Cocohodo is Korean purveyor of hodo gwaja, the walnut pastry in question. Hodo gwaja is, in fact, uncannily shaped like a walnut; but for all intents, it's just a bite-sized version of a Japanese taiyaki with a walnut morsel embedded in the azuki paste filling.
Since it's as big as a donut hole, you can fit one in your mouth. Doing this, however, is very stupid idea. When a hodo gwaja is just freshly made, formed in a walnut-shaped waffle press, the azuki will be a scalding, sticky equivalent of red hot lava.
Wrapped up in tissue paper and boxed up like precious truffles, you wouldn't think they'd be such a first-degree burn hazard, but be warned! Eat them. Enjoy them. But bite into them carefully, blowing to cool it off.
Do it as you ponder the last question you'll ask: "Where has this been all my life?"
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