Had a few comments from people complained that I had left them off of last week's menu - sorry - UNINSPIRED last week - so didn't do anything! So you weren't left off -there just wasn't a menu. hehehe...to give you an idea of what I served my family - one night it was defrosted gohlee gohmtangm, fried spam, rice and kimchee (washed for the kids) for dinner...that was the sort of week I had...
I got some great feedback - TWO people (thank you Jeannie and Linda) went out on a limb and tried the kalbi ggim and both had great reviews for it. Linda added moo to hers and said it was really good and so that is something else you can put in your kalbi ggim for a slight change. Also, Linda experienced the joys of freezing gohlee gook, and then turning it into a quick mandoo gook for her family a week later...to rave reviews. It is TOTALLY worth freezing the gook to have on hand for later...so it is well worth your time...your gohlee can be boiled several times to get that good rich white broth. please see mini lesson from a few weeks ago as to technique. Hannah tried agrodolce Salmon and said it was a winner - so I'm happy to hear that.
Marinating Mini Lesson (had a request from one of my loyal readers)
Korean beef is generally based on a good marinade and if you have a good one, you can do a lot of things with it. The following marinade can be used to marinate , which then can be grilled and sliced across the grain for a really nice meat - flank steak, kalbi, or bulgoki. Another trick to marinating and saving time - it doesn't hurt to do MORE and actually the effort to do more is well worth it - because it doesn't actually take more time to marinate more meat. I usually do a triple portion, and then I have enough to freeze two packs of whatever (kalbi, bulgoki or flank) and then I can quickly defrost it if I want to make something with it in the next month or so. So when you buy your meat, just buy extra with the thought that you'll freeze some to have ready for a quick meal later.
Marinade (for about 3-4lbs of meat) (easily doubled)
1/2 cup soy
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sake
2 T garlic (or more if you like it more garlicky)
These days, you'll see lots of recipes where people add sriracha to the marinade, or ginger or pear juice - but I'm a purist. Grated pear is quite popular in a lot of kalbi marinades in korea, so you could experiment with grating an Asian pear into your marinade and see if you like it.
One trick - which may sound incredibly time consuming, but really isn't, is to have your marinade in one bowl and another separate bowl. Dip each piece of meat into the marinade, coat well, and then place that into the other bowl. It is tempting to simply pour the marinade over all the meat and let it be done with it, but you will lose out in getting a really great even marinade. In this regard, bulgoki may be a bit more time consuming to dip individual pieces of meat in the marinade, but it is well worth the effort.
The other trick, particularly with kalbi, is to rinse each piece of kalbi to clean off bone fragments and whatnot that gets in there from the slicing of the meat.
If you're going to do flank steak, I like to just put cleaned whole green onions, interspersed with the marinated flank, to provide additional flavor during marination. You can also try putting big chunks of white onion if you like.
I like an overnight marinade, so I portion off what I'm going to freeze and put them in ziplog freezer bags, double bagged, and then put the rest in a sealed container and wait for the next day. Serve with rice, kimchee, ssam, sssamjang, cucumbers, carrots and enjoy!
Happy BBQ everyone!
Menu #1 - Stuffed chicken thighs with Red Bell Pepper Sauce
I did some experimenting last week - in my long search for more dairy free, soy free recipes to amuse my palate. I came upon this one - which was very very delicious. it's not hard, although the whole stuffing the olive paste inside the chicken may seem finicky - the flavors were YUM and my kids just loved it. The bell pepper was really enhanced by the olives as well - and it was a delicious dinner. Sung's only complaint was there wasn't enough sauce (always his complaint) so bear that in mind.
Menu #2 - Sake Chicken with Spinach Deunjahng gook, rice and kimchee.
I've had a few phone calls with people calling me about the sake chicken - for those who haven't had it - super easy, super delicious and super quick to make....and usually a hit.
1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c sake
2 T sesame oil
for a slightly spicy kick - optional - Add Sambal Oelek 1/4 c- which is the chinese ground chilis - very yummy...
1.5 lbs wings and drummetes
Mix soy,sake, sesame oil (and sambal if so desired) Pour over chicken. Put in fridge - marinate at least two hours - but it's better over night.
Preheat oven 350. Place chicken in a single layer on a sheet pan and put in the preheated oven. Cook for 45 minutes and then the last 10 minutes (watch carefully) raise heat to 400 to crisp and caramelize.
Spinach Deunjahng gook
Sorry to say - but the cornerstone of this one will also be gohleeg gook. IF you HAVE the frozen gohlee gook - see how many places it gets used! AWESOME STUFF!
Spinach - washed carefully and cut in half (basically leaves and stems separate)
1 jalapeno (if you like it spicy)
garlic (to your taste)
Gook Gahnjahng (soup soy sauce - if you dont' have it, substitute salt)
Place your gohlee broth in a pot. Bring to a boil. Add washed spinach, jalapeno and garlic. Now for a more refined deunjahng gook - you need a hand strainer. (in case I'm not clearly explaining it, a picture of a strainer is here
You basically put the strainer in the water and put the deunjahng in the strainer and mix with your spoon. This way all the clumps in deunjahng don't actually make it into your soup, but rather you only let the flavor into your soup. In the end, your strainer should only have the soy skins and the lumpy stuff there, and your soup will be smooth with no random clumps in it. (my husband hates those clumps on the bottom of his bowl.)
Menu #3 - Mediterranean Couscous Salad and
I just get skinless boness chicken breasts, salt and pepper on both sides and fry them up in a skillet with olive oil. Then I chop it up and serve it with this couscous salad which is REALLY yummy and refreshing. The salad would probably also go great with .
Giada uses Israeli Couscous (available and most trader joes and whole foods) but I used regular couscous (only because that is what I had.) Flavors are very nice and lemony and refreshing...enjoy!
Menu #4 - Pack it In Udon - you can use your choice of protein and KIMCHEE
at your local Chinese or Japanese market, you can find the following soup base: Kikkoman Hon Tsuyu.
the above is just a picture of what it is.
Now - it does have MSG in it, but the soup base itself is so good that I dilute it and feel pretty decently about giving it to my kids. Make soup base, bring it to a boil. Add your choice of bok choy, carrots, enoki mushrooms, regular mushrooms, tempura (odeng), scallions. Usuallly I do three kinds of odeng which have been sliced into small pieces, a lot of bok choy, enoki mushrooms and scallions but you can add whatever.
In a SEPARATE pot, boil your udon noodles - and when fully cooked, drain. Place your noodles in their individual bowls and THEN pour the broth and mix of veggies on top. DO NOT be tempted to boil noodles in the same pot as your broth - it will make yuckiness...the broth isn't clear, noodles get sticky - all big mess...
Enjoy! Hope you all have a great week - let me know what works and what doesn't!
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