During the three months of the trip in America, I offered to cook Korean food to some of our hosts. Korean food is not something they are used to eating at home, but I wanted to show them it’s easy and delicious. It was a great experience for me too. I like cooking, but I haven’t had many chances for the last few years while I was working full time, because I was trading all my own time with working at the office. Cooking and sharing Korean food was a great joy. How great cooking is. Julia Child would be proud of me. A few months ago, I posted Your guide to hosting #KoreanFoodWednesday in a foreign land. This is an extended version of the previous article.
Gimbab: Rice roll with seaweed and various vegetables
For our friend’s cookout in Washington D.C., I brought gimbab and it was a hit! Everyone liked it, and was asking me what this was, and the easy description was… ‘Yes, just like the Japanese Sushi but different ingredients.’
Gimbab is a picnic food. Everyone packed gimbab for the field trip when I was in school. It’s a kind of food that is better to make a lot, then just a few rolls. It’s hard to measure the amount of ingredients, and the kitchen’s going to be a mess while cooking it because there’s a lot of ingredients. I remember the day before me and my brother’s school trip, our house always smelled like sesame oil, and we ate gimbab for a few days after. So this time, I made about 20 rolls in 4 hours, I believe. Ate some for lunch, left some at home, made vegetarian-without ham, and packed the rest of it for the party. It was a hoot! I didn’t have the same ingredients but I improvised, and the result was pretty good. Ah, the joy of being a chef; making people happy.
How I make: cook rice using the rice cooker (it needs to be sticky) while preparing other ingredients. Put seaweed on the cutting board, spread the rice. Then roll it with vegetables and other ingredients. Cut it before serving.
Main ingredients: seaweed (un-grilled), rice, egg, cucumber (or pickle), carrot, spinach, ham, vinegar, and sesame oil.
Jeyuk Kimchi Bokkeum: Stir-fried pork with Kimchi and vegetable
It’s one of the most popular dishes, especially at a small Korean restaurant. If I make it in Korea, I would use several different condiments but since I was away, I whipped it up with kimchi and vegetables. It’s easy to cook and hard to go wrong. Of course getting Kimchi would be challenging, but once you get it, you can get the flavour into the dish.
How I make: First, cook kimchi in the pan with garlic and a little bit of oil to burst out the flavour. Then put the pork and vegetable in and stir it till pork is ready.
Main ingredients: pork, kimchi, vegetables: garlic, spring onion, onion, green pepper and serve with lettuce.
Hobak Jeon: Zucchini pancake
Hobak Jeon is a holiday food. On the ceremony food table, you can find hobak jeon and sangsun jeon (fish pancake). Since zucchini is a common vegetable, preparing it wasn’t hard at all.
How I make it: Slice the zucchini thiner than 1cm. Cover it with some flour and dip it into a bowl of egg. Then fry it!
Main Ingredients: Zucchini, flour, and egg.
Have you ever cook your country’s cuisine overseas? Did you enjoy it?
Was there any difficulties?