Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Yook Gae Jang Broth

While undergoing my latest treatments, our family decided to stay at my parent's house so that we can take advantage of the extra help with Munchkin and the YUMMY food. No matter that we've been married now for close to seven years, the MR will still say that my mom is undoubtedly a better cook than I am. I don't take any offense (not REALLY) since my mom has had a 30 year head start on me. Plus, I agree with him - my mom is truly the best cook. ;)

One of the MR's favorite dishes is yook gae jang. I have always been told that my yook gae jang is pretty good (not to toot my own horn or anything, but my FIL declared it awesome! keke) but the MR says that my mom's is way better than mine.

While staying at my parent's house, I finally learned the key.

The KEY is in the broth!

After boiling and discarding of the impurities in the meat, my mom then makes a beef broth with the following: lots of whole garlic cloves, a couple of whole peeled onions, a peeled sprig of ginger, some dashi-ma, and even moo. She boils this broth for about 2-3 hours before separating the stock from all the other stuff.

Only after creating the perfect, hearty stock does she move onto shredding the meat and adding all the other ingredients you can read about on my previous post. I fell asleep before watching her add the other ingredients, so I have no idea how much of what she actually uses. =P

So helpful aren't I? =)

In any case, the result was a happy MR and a wonderful meal for our whole family. I've been battling a little nausea, so I haven't been able to taste the final product but the MR assures me it's better than mine. =P

On a random note, I can't stress the importance of a strong support network when going through something like cancer treatments. Just being able to sleep in during mornings and not worry about Munchkin getting fed and sent off to school is such a huge relief.

Despite everything I'm going through right now, I'm so incredibly thankful. I'm thankful for my family, I'm thankful we have PPO insurance that allows me to see pretty much any DR I want, and I'm thankful for everyone who reads this blog and sends me little messages of encouragement.

I'm truly horrendous at replying to emails and following up on comments, but please know that I read each and every one. I'm absolutely humbled by the people who are committed to donating to ACCRF just because I posted about it and asked.

Thank you. Truly.

I've been asked about a cookbook for a while and quite honestly - I just haven't had the time or energy. But upon learning of my recurrence, I'm more committed to getting something made soon. If not for the general public - at least for my little Munchkin.

At the end of the day, I only keep up with this blog so that Munchkin can look back and remember his mom's cooking.


  1. I've been a reader for several months now and have been praying for you and your family. I just registered to be a bone marrow donor on your account. Thank you for kicking my butt in the right direction to do it. The thought's crossed my mind before but you're right..unless it hits close to home, you never get around to it. Remember that your courage and will to stay positive encourages me in my own life. God Bless~ Jane

  2. Thank you for keeping up with the blog... As a reader/follower of your site, I have always enjoyed the food aspect (I love Korean food) but now I find myself checking for updates about how you are doing... You are such an inspiration and I know that you will KICK this illness!!! Stay strong, positive and take care of yourself.

  3. Hope the nausea goes away soon. No fun!

  4. thanks for posting! this looks great! i've been thinking of you and hope that your treatment goes well. just praying that you'll recover and feel better soon.

    b's mommy

  5. Thank you SO much for all of the work you put into this blog... I've been reading since last summer and I would have never learned how to cook any of my favorite Korean dishes without your help. I truly think that you can't learn by just reading a recipe, you have to have a guiding hand and visual imagery, and since I didn't have a Korean mom to teach me, your blog has been that guiding hand for me!!

    I hope that you find a publisher to get a cookbook out. You'd obviously have a built in group of buyers, including myself, and a great narrative voice. I'm praying for you and your family, and I'm always hoping to see a positive update when I check the site.

  6. I so understand your feelings about leaving your recipes and stories for the Munchkin.

    I have a "family stories" category on my blog, and I'm going to make sure those get put together for my sons in a print version. Probably save it online for awhile.

    If I can make one personal observation about having cancer and also having a child: I think having kids makes you live longer. You want to be there for them so badly.

    Not that husbands and other family members--fathers and mothers, of course--aren't important, but the thought of leaving your child ...

    My sons have kept me alive for 13 years from my first diagnosis.

  7. Seems to be very spicy.I want the low spice version.


  8. Just want to say, I love you! In a nonstalker way. =) Jane

  9. Hi, I stumbled across your blog today looking for some Korean recipes for my 11mth old. He has never been a fussy eater but I have noticed that whenever we go to my mum's for dinner (I'm Korean Australian) - he always prefers her food to mine!

    Anyway, thank you so much for all your hard work on your blog. You're not only helping me to cook yummy and heartfelt food for my family but you've inspired me to tell my little one and my amazing husband how much I love them each and every day and share in those big bear hugs as much as I can. I love that you're leaving this blog for your son - although I think you're a huge fighter so you might be blogging for some time now!! Which we will all benefit from :)

    Thank you for sharing your recipes and your life xo



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