If you’re Korean and grew up in Korea, then chances are you will know about DALGONA (aka “ppop-gi”), the sugar candy that was sold on the streets especially around schools. It’s a very traditional part of Korean culture and childhood for most. After school, we would hang around the small stores nearby and buy a snack or drink of which one was Dalgona, a toffee-like candy made by cooking sugar and soda over a fire. These sweets aren’t that special in terms of their ingredients, yet make up a special part of our childhood memories because they were ‘fun’. It was like a game for us, using our small fingers and even toothpicks to try and break the thin candy into the shape created using various different molds. If you succeeded, you would get another free dalgona. If not, there would be a bunch of sighs and ahhs, but you were still happy making your way back home as the sweetness melted in your mouth.
Now in Q3 of 2021, users who enjoyed the Netflix series “Squid Game” are partaking in experiencing this Korean childhood nostalgia by making dalgona at home or selling and buying them wherever they’re made. In China, where the series is actually illegal to watch, dalgona stalls are popping up everywhere after people have managed to watch the series through the dark net.
Customers wait for an employee to serve Korean-style sugar candy, known as “dalgona” or “ppopgi” in Korean, at a shop in Shanghai on Oct. 12, 2021. (Yonhap)
Here is a video to show you the elderly Korean couple who accidentally became an overnight sensation after being scouted by the production team to create these candies for the series on set.
For actual instructions on how to make the candy, please refer to a few resources on the Internet shared below.
The Arts & Crafts Korea Team