Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cucumber Kimchi - (오이 소박이)

You're probably going to hate me for this, but I have a recipe without measurements for you. Another reason I haven't updated this blog as much is because it's SUCH a pain to 'measure' ingredients when you're a person who isn't used to measuring. =/ Even when cooking non-Korean foods, I hardly ever bust out the measuring utensils. I'm a taste as you go type of person.

Anyhow, I had a little free time today so I decided to make some cucumber kimchi.  My husband loves all types of cucmber based banchans, so I have an arsenal of cucumber recipes to keep him happy.

First Cut a bunch of pickling cucumbers in half and then quarter them ALMOST all the way to the bottom. Let it sit in some salt water for a couple of hours like so.  I forgot to take pictures of a few steps, but after about 3-4 hours, rinse all the cucumbers under cool water.

Meanwhile, prepare the *sok* - the insides were made with the following: (this is the closest you'll be getting to real measurements...sorry!)

  • 1 julienne carrot (I use my Japanese brand mandolin for this - it's the best!)
  • 2 cups of julienne moo
  • 1 bunch of buchoo cut into 1-inch sections
  • 1/2 cup of sliced green onions
  • 1 red pepper sliced thinly
  • 1/4 onions slice thinly (you don't really have to do this, I just used leftover onions from the ddukbokki I made today)
  • 1/2 cup of red pepper powder
  • 2 TB minced garlic
  • 3-4 TB of cooking wine
  • 1 TB sugar
  • 1 TB honey powder
  • dash of ginger powder and pepper and salt
  • 2 TB sesame seeds
  • 1 TB shrimp jut or just use fish sauce
  • a splash of sesame oil

After you have each and every cucumber stuffed, leave it out for a night before placing inside the fridge.  You can start eating this about 3-4 days later.


Enjoy! The MR said it turned out great and he devoured the last batch within a week.  In case I don't get back in time, HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!  I truly hope you and yours have a wonderful, fabtabulistic, awesome, dreamy NEW YEAR!  Hug and kiss the ones you love and cherish every moment you have. =)

Monday, December 14, 2009

Spicy Oxtail Jjim - (매운 쇠꼬리 찜)

I know it's been such a long time since I did a food update. It partly has to do with the fact that I'm not cooking much these days and also when I do cook, I'm in such a hurry that I don't have time to pause and take pictures every step of the way.

The cold weather (can't deny that I'm a SoCal girl) has been quite annoying so I haven't been leaving the house much lately.


After lounging around and doing absolutely nothing all morning, I finally got my butt in gear and headed over to the K-market. I bought a package of ox tails and decided to step outside the box a little.  I have yet to taste the *spicy kalbi jjim* I hear everyone raving about, so I thought I would make my own version of it at home.


As always drain the blood for about 30 minutes, then boil the meat until all the gunk rises.

Meanwhile, get your sauce ready. Mix together the following:

  • 1.5 cup water
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 TB minced garlic
  • 3 TB cooking wine
  • 3 TB sugar
  • 3 TB honey powder
  • 1 TB red pepper powder
  • 1/4 minced Asian Pear
  • dash of pepper
  • dash of ground ginger

After the meat boils, give it a rinse under cool water...

Add it back to the pot with the sauce and bring it to a strong boil. Once it's boiling, close the lid and let it simmer on medium/low heat for about 1.5 hours.

I then prepped baby white potatoes, baby carrots, and dried daechus (jujubes).

I also decided to add some mushrooms – just because I had them.

After an hour, it should start looking like this...

Add the potatoes, carrots and daechus and continue to let it boil for another 30 minutes.

Finally, add the mushrooms and let it simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes.

After about two hours of simmering, you're ready to serve!

If you've cooked it long enough, the meat should just fall right off and melt in your mouth!  Enjoy.  The little guy loved it today.  =P  Hopefully I will find time to be back sooner than later.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Anchovie Dwen-jang gook - (멸치 된장국)

Tap. Tap. Tap. Are you still there? It seems just as I start to build up site traffic on this blog, I go on a hiatus. It's tough trying to keep up this blog sometimes...especially when I don't step foot into the kitchen for two weeks at a time. =P Also, I realized that every since I upgraded my camera (50D baby!) that I'm afraid to take it into the kitchen for fear it might get splashed on, dropped, etc.

Anyhow, here goes a simple dwenjang gook using anchovy broth.    


I add roughly 7 cups of water to a pot along with 5-6 dried anchovies and some dried sea kelp.

After everything comes to a boil, add 1TB dwenjang, 1/2 TB minced garlic, 1TB gook ganjang, 1/2 TB minced garlic and let boil on low heat.

I decided to use bokchoy today. I washed and cut up 3 bunches of it.

Toss the bokchoy in and continue to boil.

I also threw in a handful of chopped up moo (daikon radish).

A handful of sliced onions...

And finally some kongnamool.

Let everything boil together for about 30 minutes.

And you're ready to serve! It's a fresh and light gook perfect for picky little Korean toddlers. =)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Chuseok Rice Cakes - 송편

I warned you, there are absolutely NO measurements so this 'recipe' might be a little useless. However, I wanted to put this up so that it can jog my memory when I attempt to make it one day (hopefully soon). When I make it, I promise to write down the measurements I use. =)          

MIL (my friend's) started off with some rice flour. She said the flour was FRESH straight from Ktown. I guess there are places that sell fresh rice flour like this. Who knew?

She took some HOT water and seasoned it with a little salt. The water was salty enough that I could taste the salt, but not overwhelmingly salty. "A little bit of salt" is what you need in the hot water she said. =P You then add "just enough" hot water to bring the rice flour to a dough consistency.

You don't want it too firm, nor too pliable. You want it JUST RIGHT.

MIL made three wonderful fillings. Too bad I can't tell you what they were because she said it in Korean and I forgot. Yeah, I'm beginning to think this recipe is REALLY useless. =)

I know this one! It's red beans! She said all you have to do is soak the beans and then boil it. After it's boiled, you season it with a dash of salt and some sugar.

I don't know what this was, but it was SOOOO good. It's some type of bean.

Then you just take the dough and flatten it out. The key was to keep it a bit thick. I tried to make it thin like a mandoo and all the insides popped right out. =P

Make them all like so...(aesthetics was obviously not our strong point). I think the UGLY ones were made by my dear friend Y. =P

Then place them in a steamer for about 15 minutes. It was interesting because she just stacked them on top of each other. I thought they would stick to each other, but they didn't.

After 15 minutes, the dduks were done!

She washed them in a bit of water mixed with sesame oil.…

After letting them dry for a while...

We were ready to devour them. My pictures aren't that great because I was too busy popping these suckers into my mouth. They tasted wonderful all warm and sticky. Happy belated Korean Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Baby Mushrooms

Here's a quick and easy banchan. I tend to take whatever vegetables I have in my fridge at the time and just mix them all up together. 

I bought some baby mushrooms and decided to make it for a breakfast side dish one lazy Sunday morning.

Heat up a pan with 1/2 TB sesame oil and about 1/2 TB of minced garlic.

Wash and cut your mushrooms.

Add the mushrooms along with some sliced onions to the pot and saute it it with about 1/4 TB of dwen-jang.

Season it with some sesame seeds and you're ready to serve! A quick and easy banchan. =)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Clear Ojinguh Gook - (맑은 오징어국)


I know I've been gone a long time and I'm going to cheat and not even give a new recipe but something that I should have finished up long ago. It's crazy because I'm not working and my son is in preschool which means I have a LOT of time to myself. Yet, I feel busier than ever just going around and doing random things. I'm supposed to go back to work soon, but taking this last year off has been a blessing in disguise. I feel so much better and re-energized!

I keep saying how I wish there was a way that I never had to work again. Wishful thinking. In this economy, I guess I should be happy that I have something to go back to. =P 
Anyhow, here we go! Clear ojinguh gook. I have no idea what else to call it! All the women in my family make this soup for special occasions like choo-suk or my Grandpa's jae-sah. I think the reason is because it's quite time consuming because there are a lot of steps. It's a "special" gook that we eat once or twice a year. 

First go and grab some book-uh.  This is the brand my MIL sent from Korea.  It’s great.  I don’t know if they sell it here.  =/

Anyhow, grab about 1/2 cup of book-uh with some dashima (sea kelp - thanks to whoever pointed that out!) and boil it in about...oh let's say 8 cups of water. Boil it for about 20 minutes or so while you're getting everything else prepared. I didn't measure anything yet again. Sorry. Am I becoming a Korean mother on you? A little bit of this and a little bit of that! =)

Wash and clean your squid and bring a pot of water to a boil.

Drain about 1/2 cup of beef...

Slightly boil the squid. This really helps in getting the fishy smell out and it also gets rid of all the excess liquid from the squid.

Chop up about two cups of moo.

In a pot, heat about 1 TB of sesame oil, 1/2 TB of minced garlic, and 2.5 TB of gook ganjang.

Add the beef and saute until done.

Chop up your squid like so....

And add the squid and moo and mix it for a little bit.

Then add the book-uh broth and some tofu and let it boil for about 30 minutes on low heat. The broth will eventually turn white.

The finished product! Munchkin *LOVES* ojinguh so this is one of his favorite gooks. =)


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