I’m lucky enough to live about 20 minutes from an H-Mart, so I actually have an embarrassment of Asian riches at my ready disposal. Before it arrived, I had Ryu rely on a few other smaller, cheaper Asian groceries that never seemed to have anything in stock…or if they did, it was probably expired, heh.
H-Mart is fucking amazing though. I want to live there.
We have a pretty robust Korean community in the general vicinity here, here being about ten minutes or so away, near my local theater, in an area called La Crescenta and La Canada Flintridge. [Fun Fact: folks who follow me on twitter often note when I post my ticket stubs from that theater, because it has the word ‘Canada’ on it, and we have certain listeners there.]
At any rate, @fire is a member of a Korean martial arts group based in that area, and our favorite place for pizza is a Korean place called Hello Pizza. They do this amazing crust called Gold Crust that has a sweet potato paste piped into it. It’s just crazy amazing. They also make a great Bulgogi Pizza. Which may sound weird…but believe me. Also…they have the best customer service in the world. I could go on and on, but I won’t.
Because all of this is to say that I can find these ingredients easily if I venture into a Korean market in the area. I’m just often afraid to. Because I’m dumb.
As for the fryer…I used to have the same barrier-of-entry for my fondue pot. It was just such a pain to clean. I’m really pleased you shared that detail, @ArmandoPenblade. I’ve never had a deep fryer, but I totally grasp what you’re saying. Cooks don’t often talk about the after cleanup as part of the mental prep.
In recent cooking news, I made a loaf of bread for my neighbors. They bake cookies for us over the holidays and so I wanted to return the container with something in it. I got a text after delivering the bread in which one of them used the word “epiphany” as a description of my bread.
This was a really nice moment. Sometimes you cook for people and they don’t say anything. It’s nice when they are effusive.
Also…nothing I’ve ever cooked has been called an epiphany before. So I’ve got that going for me. Which is nice.
How do you handle the oil when you’re done cooking? That’s what has always kept us from getting one. We don’t want to store oil in the fridge and it seems so wasteful to just get rid of it, to say nothing of the complications of disposing of it.
I will just leave it in for a couple of days at a time while actively frying stuff for meals (eg fries for the zakis last week), then strain it back into the container, which goes below the fridge. I use high heat oils like corn, and don’t really crank the temp up much, so I usually get a dozen or more uses out of a batch. What usually stops me is cooking fish or shrimp, which leaches into the oil noticeably. Then I do toss it out in a container, yeah.
Some cheesy corn, which is a strange but simple recipe apparently popular in a lot of Korean restaurants right now. Sweet corn, salt, pepper, sugar, butter, and a bit of mayo, sauteed till bubbly and then topped with sliced fresh mozzarella and broiled till even more bubbly. Toss on green onions and call it a day.
A plate featuring some spicy pork bulgogi (Thinly sliced pork shoulder marinated in blended up Korean pear, soy sauce, rice syrup, vinegar, mirin, gochujang, ginger, and garlic along with sliced yellow onion and diced green onion, then seared at high heat); some steamed green beans cuz my gf saw a picture of a plating like that and actually likes green beans; some steamed white rice; the aforementioned cheesy corn; and some ssamjjang (a dip mostly comprised of gochujang pepper paste and doenjang soy bean paste).
Everything about the recipe set off alarm bells in my brain, but the end product is sweet corn in butter topped with cheese, and that is pretty delicious. Many versions add diced veggies, but my gf isn’t into onions or peppers, and the dish was largely for her sake, since she thought it sounded cool on a local joint’s menu.
I’m totally into trying that corn too. It looks so simple, and so appealing. It reminds me of a video that taught me how to kick up cheap ramen…a video done by a Korean chef who said it was a childhood favorite, and one of those late night food snacks that he would crave after closing the restaurant, or after a night of drinking.
It’s simple. Just boil the ramen noodles as directed (3 minutes usually), mix in the seasoning, move the noodles around to create a little well and crack an egg in and cover it with some of the noodles in the pot, and then cover the pot and let it sit off the heat and poach the egg for another 3 minutes (depending upon how you like the egg). Then put a slice or two of American cheese (it has to be the fake gross stuff, but it becomes this wonderful mess of orange petroleum) and sprinkle some scallions on it to finish it off.
I love it. I generally cut up some jalapenos or serranos (whatever I have on hand) during the noodle cooking phase, and put a spoonful of Sambal Oelek in the bottom of the serving bowl.
Yeah the koreans and japanese are weirdly into, like, frozen quality corn. I went to a korean BBQ place that did that same thing, corn on the side of the BBQ topped with cheese. It was weird. Rather save my stomach space for a seafood pajeon.
Most fusion food isn’t great, because they force it. Korean tacos sound interesting, and are certainly eatable, but aren’t as good as regular korean food or authentic tacos. Asian pizza varieties are all abominations.
Fusion that happened naturally, like chindian, tex/mex, Hawaiian, etc, is a different matter of course.