Thursday, March 13, 2008

I love Korean food!

Yes, like the title indicates I LOVE KOREAN FOOD!!! <3

My host family had never had Korean food so I happily agreed to introduce them! The only problem: I don't know how to cook it. -_-;;

With the help of Ian's google search, the Food Network website, and DaeGon I found a recipe for Korean Barbecue. Then I hit another stump, short rib meat needed for this dish does not exist in France! haha I even called a Korean restaurant in Paris to ask them how to say the name of the meat in French. I first started talking in Korean and the person says "I don't speak Korean" and so I switched to French. And then they say "Even though our restaurant is called Korean BBQ we don't really have any..." WHAT?! HAHAHAHA I started laughing at them. They should call it NOT Korean and NO BBQ restaurant.

Anyways! Eric (host dad) bought some super thick meat which I had to chop up into tiny pieces and dunked it in the marinade. I found a lot of good ingredients that are hard to find (like Asian pears and sesame oil) at a local Asian grocer's! Lucky! I also found sticky rice, dakkwang (pickled radish), kimchee (which was SUPER sweet, so not up to a Korean spicy standard-- but my host mom said it was spicy!), and kim (dried seasoned seaweed, yum!). It was great!! I had so much fun being in the kitchen again. Don't scoff, for those of you who have lived with me, I am not a master in the kitchen I know, but cooking is so nice! It was getting to be like dorm food where you just sit and wait for the food to come. So I let the meat marinate over night, and then last night it was time to cook!! Whooo!!!

I actually did a really dumb thing too! I was going to cook the rice first because I had never used their rice cooker (but super lucky they had one!) and I didn't know how long it would take, so I washed it and put it in the cooker. But I didn't want to leave the cooker on for too long since I was about to go to the gym, so I decided to let it sit. When I came back 1.5 hours later the rice absorbed all the water!! haha But this is how we learn, so I just laughed it off. Besides, the rice was SO GOOD.

So yes! They really really liked it! I was surprised! Tom (the 7 year old) actually ate the kim and Dominique (host mom) didn't believe it. And Dominique ate most of the dakkwang, she kept making fun of it earlier saying that it was a pineapple or a banana or something, and then she couldn't stop eating it. Haha. Eric LOVED the kimchee and the kim. (I showed them how to make kim-bahp! mmmm), and Dylan (13 year old) said the meat was "hyper bon" (HAHAH). And I was just content with the rice. MMM. So I bought 2 kg of rice (I WAS going to be cooking for 7 people who eat a LOT, myself included, I mean it's RICE), and Eric was like "Why 2 kg? 1 Kg serves 40 people at my restaurant". Oh yes, but Eric, this is not French rice, this is Asian rice! But just to not freak him out, I only cooked about 5 cups of rice... they all got mad at me for not cooking enough!! haha So I ended up cooking 1 kg (8-9 cups of rice) for the whole evening. Ya hoo!

So I guess I'm learning how to cook Korean food in France.

Oh and they had chopsticks, so that completed my happiness.

RICE!!!!!!!!! BAHP!!!!

Hello, Kim!

Cooking the meat... at the time I thought, "at least it smells good" haha

CHOPSTICKS!!! tee hee!



The night before (aka the night I marinated the meat) I went to my friend Jenny's birthday party, which was a dinner at an Ethiopian restaurant. Never been to one... but... I will definitely go again! And I already looked up places in LA and SF for when I go back home. It was SO GOOD. You eat with your hands! So they set down a plate with a tortilla-like circle sheet (it was very soft yet sturdy! I was surprised at how well it kept together) with meat with spices and sauce (MMM) and salad. Then there was another plate of the tortilla sheets. You rip off pieces of those and you use those to pick up the meat and salad, and you wrap it up and pop it in your mouth for HEAVEN. It was sooo good!!!! And then for dessert, one of Jenny's friends bought her a cake, and it was like nothing I've ever tasted before!! It was chocolate, with cream and a crunchy rice cake (like KitKat) layer... oh man. Yea, this is why I joined the gym. ;P

Jenny et moi <3

(Sorry! I didn't take any pics of the food!)

More updates later! And maybe about stuff other than food. Maybe not. ;)

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