Friday, May 28, 2010

Korean Friday

Today was a day filled with all sorts of Korean food; for dinner, I made dduk bok-ki with spicy pork and spinach.  Dduk bok-ki is a Korean rice cake in the shape of a elongated cylinder.  It is made fresh everyday and is not supposed to be refrigerated; it actually says on the label to discard within 24 hours.  In a wok (which I don't use that much, but should start using more often), I sauteed 1 small onion, sliced into thin strips, until soft over medium-high heat, then added 4 scallions cut in diagonal slices for a few more minutes, and then added 3 cloves of minced garlic for a minute.  I seasoned everything with a little salt to help it soften.  Next, I added about 1/2 a pound of spicy pork cut into 2" x 1" strips with poultry shears, and sauteed until the pork was cooked through.  Then, I added about a cup of kimchi, a little bit of soy paste, and the dduk bok-ki and sauteed it until everything was hot.  For the last few minutes, I added half a bag of organic spinach from Whole Foods and a couple of splashes of Sriracha for extra heat and tossed everything today until the spinach was wilted.  I sprinkled the dishes with a little roasted sesame and dinner was served.  It was really good; I absolutely love anything noodle-based, and the fresh dduk bok-ki had a wonderful chewy, springy "kiu" texture that is really fun to eat.  The kimchi and spicy pork added substance and a nice spicy kick and slightly sour flavor.  It's a very filling dish; we have enough left over for lunch tomorrow.  We paired it with Foxen's 2007 Chenin Blanc that we picked up during Santa Barbara wine tasting a year ago.  The Chenin Blanc wasn't bad with the dduk bok-ki; it had enough personality to stand up to the spicy food.  However, on its own, it was a little sugary.  Not sweet like fruit, but actually sugary, which I find unusual (not in a good way) in wines.
 Dduk bok-ki: the label on the left says "discard after 24 hours"
The Gallery Kimchi: it's pretty good, but could be a little spicier.  I like how they slice so that it's more manageable
I really like cooking in the wok; I should use it more often
 Back to the beginning, we drove to Koreatown to the Galleria Market to pick up ingredients for the BBQ on Monday.  I picked up short ribs, marinated spicy pork, kimchi, cabbage, romaine, scallions, garlic, asian pears, and brown sugar.  The market has a great produce section with really reasonable prices; much better than Whole Foods and even better than the mass market chains like Albertsons.  They also have cuts of meat that are hard to find at any other market. 
A huge aisle of sliced pork and beef; I couldn't even get it all in one photo
After the supermarket, we went to BCD Tofu House for some organic soon-dubu.  We got the seafood soon-dubu with oysters, clams, and shrimp and the combination soon-dubu with shrimp, beef and mushrooms, both at medium heat.  It was really good, it was served bubbling hot, was nicely spiced, and served with rice in a clay pot.

I love cracking a raw egg into the still boiling hot pot of soon-dubu
Rice in the stone bowls
anchan (side dishes)

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