bulgogi panino ~ kimchi, cheddar, ssamjang mayo

bulgogi panino ~ kimchi, cheddar, ssamjang mayo

bulgogi panino ~ kimchi, cheddar, scallion, ssamjang mayo

Now this is a sandwich. A Korean-Italian sandwich, Bulgogi Panino. Bulgogi (literally “fire-meat”) is grilled marinated beef which is piled on a roll with kimchi, cheddar, scallions, and ssamjang mayo – then pressed and grilled on a panini maker.

The thinly sliced beef is marinated in a soy sauce-brown sugar-sesame-garlic marinade then cooked over fire. Napa cabbage kimchi and sharp cheddar cheese is one of my favorite food combinations. It simply rocks – kimchi’s zingy fermented flavors are balanced by the rich cheese. And ssamjang mayo, nothing like the ubiquitous chipotle mayonnaise, is a bit spicy but has an incredible depth of flavor. Ssamjang is a thick, spicy paste made from combining gochujang (red chili paste) with doenjang (fermented soybean paste) with sesame oil, onion, and garlic.

There is obviously no shortage of flavor going on here…

the bulgogi panino recipe

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Kimchi Ramen with Korean Fried Dumpling

Kimchi Ramen with Korean Fried Dumpling

Seafood Kimchi Ramen (Haemul Kimchi Ramyun)
Shrimp & Kimchi Fried Dumpling (Goon Mandu)
Quail Egg, Fishcake, Roasted Seaweed, Shrimp, Scallion

We’re celebrating the re-dedication of our beloved Korean Friendship Bell by enjoying Korea’s most celebrated pickle dish – kimchi! There are several hundred types of kimchi which are made from various vegetables, fish, seafood, fruit, and herbs. Our recipe uses the most popular of all types of kimchi – napa cabbage kimchi – for the base of the soup and the filling for the fried dumplings.

Korean Friendship Bell

Kimchi is made by pickling vegetables (or other foods) with seasonings such as chili, ginger, garlic, and salt. Generally, there are two categories of kimchi – the “quick” kind which is made for immediate consumption or eaten within a few days just slightly fermented, and the other type in which the mixture is allowed to ferment and mature. Both methods result in Korea’s favorite dish – a delightfully pungent, robust food that is so much more than a side dish.

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Kimchi & Cheddar Omelette

Kimchi & Cheddar Omelette

Kimchi & Cheddar Omelette

Even if you are not among those of us who crave kimchi on a regular basis, you may still find this omelette irresistible. Korea’s most celebrated pickle dish – kimchi – is super flavorful! Here, napa cabbage kimchi’s zingy fermented flavors are balanced by light fluffy eggs, melting cheddar and rich sour cream. The result is an omelette that is tangy, spicy, even a bit crunchy. A real eye-opener. Good morning! Breakfast. Is. Served.

Sunrise over the Port of LA

Kimchi & Cheddar Omelette Recipe

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Stuffed Cucumber Kimchi with Shrimp and Minari

 stuffed cucumber kimchi with shrimp, minari
Stuffed Cucumber Kimchi
Oi Sobaegi 오이소박이

With Shrimp, Minari, Sesame Oil, Sesame Seeds, Gochugaru

Jupiter has aligned once again with Mars, in the blogging universe that is. Food Network’s Summer Fest features cucumbers this week. Our monthly cooking group, the Creative Cooking Club’s theme is “stuff-it.” And I planned to create another seasonal Korean fusion dish this week celebrating the honor of having my recipes featured in the Korea Herald Business.

Korean + Summer + Cucumber + Stuffed = Oi Sobaegi 

 stuffed cucumber kimchi recipe, oi sobaegi

My recipe for stuffed cucumber kimchi came from studying 5 Korean cookbooks in my collection, plus researching many recipes online. One thing I kept noticing, especially on google image – the final dish was not very attractive; green logs with all this stuffing hanging out. No doubt they were delicious, but my challenge was to make the dish pleasing to the eye as well as the palate.

Pairing with shrimp was a natural combination, as the kimchi recipe contains tiny dried white shrimp. My recipe also contains a good deal of ginger, it is quite zippy. Minari is a bright herb sometimes called Korean watercress which adds a fresh note. I also used the thicker Chinese chives to hold the sliced cucumber together, making for a neat pretty presentation. This, my first attempt at oi sobaegi was surprisingly successful, so I am sharing the original recipe here.

Cookbook Resources:

  • Korean Cooking by Young Jin Song
  • Seoultown Kitchen by Debbie Lee
  • The Korean Table by Taeyung Chung
  • The Kimchi Cookbook by Kim Man-Jo
  • Aeri’s Korean Cookbook 1 by Aeri Lee

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BBQ Oysters – Gochujang Butter, Kimchi, Scallion

BBQ Oyster - Korean Style

BBQ OYSTERS – KOREAN STYLE
Gochujang Butter, Kimchi, Scallion

Let’s not pretend that these BBQ oysters will appeal to everyone. But surprisingly, those who said they were not fans of bivalve molluscs nor fermented cabbage found themselves enjoying several of the Korean Style Oysters hot off the grill. At a recent party, we served Fanny Bay Pacific Oysters boldly dressed with Korean flavors – a spicy rich gochujang butter, complex kimchi, and fresh scallion. And paired with cold Hite lager to get the party has started!

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mind-blowing appetizer: kimchi jeon (kimchi pancake)

kimchi pancake recipe
kimchi pancake / kimchi jeon 

김치전

I’m obsessed with a pancake. Korean Kimchi Jeon. How does a simple combination of flour & water plus kimchi produce such a sublime pancake? It is kimchi’s spicy, salty, sweet, sour, bitter, umami, fermented flavors when added to a basic pancake batter that result in an extraordinary snack. Complex in flavor with textures ranging from chewy to crispy and a delightful orange-hue, guests can’t get enough of this popular ahn-joo.

With a jar of kimchi in the refrigerator and the rest of the ingredients pretty much standard pantry items, in 15 minutes or so I can serve a mind-blowing appetizer. Pair with cold beer or makkoli (rice wine) to get the party started!

Two ways to enjoy ~ choose either the partially burnt caramelized kimchi pancake or the crispy/chewy version ~ same ingredients, different method.

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