Here is a super simple meal with a super crazy kick. Breaking it down: rice, pork belly, red leaf lettuce and slivers of garlic. The condiment is the key. It’s a combo of #kochu jang and dang jang. It’s like Superman of #Korean condiments.
Rice (1/2 to 1 cup per person)
1 1/2 to 2 Pounds pork belly
2-3 Bunches of red lettuce
1 Bunch of perilla leaves
1-2 Bulbs of garlic, peeled, thinly sliced
3-6 Korean finger peppers, sliced
1/3 Cup sesame oil plus 1 tablespoon
1 Tablespoon salt
1 Cup kochu jang (Korean red pepper paste)
1/4 Cup dang jang (Korean fermented soy bean paste)
1 Teaspoon soy sauce
3 Stalks of scallions
Make the rice
Slice the pork belly into 1-inch pieces. Grill the pork belly until the edges turn golden brown.
Wash the peppers and slice
Wash the red leaf lettuce and perilla leaves. Spin dry or blot dry with paper towel.
Combine the sesame oil and salt
Prepare the condiment
Combine the kochu jang, dang jang, 6-8 cloves of minced garlic, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon soy sauce and scallions. Combine into a nice paste, until ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Putting It All Together
Grab a lettuce leaf. Lay it flat on the palm of your hand. Place a perilla on top. Add rice, pork belly, the condiment, a slice or two of the peppers, and a sliver or two of garlic. OR, dip the pork belly in the sesame oil and salt mixture. Wrap in lettuce and perilla leaves. Wrap it up and chow down.
Growing up, somen and ramen noodles to us were like mac and cheese was to our American friends. Guk su is super easy to make and always satisfies my nostalgic cravings. Guk su, or somen noodles, is versatile and can be prepared in hot and cold broths and spicy pepper mix. When it is freezing, and sleeting and snowing, I opt for the hot, spicy chicken broth.
It’s super easy to make. From prep to ladling in the noodley goodness is about 20 minutes. I made beef topping for this one, but you can go veggie and leave out the topping.
4 Bundles somen noodles
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons sesame seed oil
1 Medium yellow onion sliced
7 Cloves garlic, minced
(1) 32-ounce beef broth
2 Cups water
1 Teaspoon dashida (I use anchovies flavored.)
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon kochu garu (Korean red pepper powder.)
1-2 Tablespoon(s) salt
1 Tablespoon black pepper
4-5 Scallions, 1-inch strips
2 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
Cook noodles according to directions. Set aside. Time the noodles so that it’s ready at the same time as the broth.
Crack the eggs open and add to a small bowl. Break the yolks and give it a quick whisk. Set aside.
In a pot big enough to boil 32-ounces of chicken broth plus the water, add the oils. Heat on low and add the onions and garlic. Stirring frequently, cook until the onions and garlic until soft and the onions are slightly browned on the edges, about 5 minutes.
Add the broth and water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and season with dashida, soy sauce, kochu garu, and black pepper. Add the salt a teaspoon at a time. Adjust according to your taste. Let the broth simmer for about another 5 minutes.
Quickly add the eggs and give it a quick mix until the eggs are folded in.
Serving It Up
Place about at least a cup of the noodles in 4 large bowls (If the people you’re feeding have healthy appetites, this could just serve two instead of four.) Ladle in enough broth to submerge the noodles. Top with sesame seeds and scallions. Serve immediately. You don’t want gluey noodles.
My parents’ answer to a cold, stomachache, toothache or whatever ailment is jook. As a kid, I didn’t like the mushy texture and associated it with being sick. As an adult, I love the soothing, warm texture of the smooth rice, and the rich flavors of the broth make me feel whole again.
The best part about this dish is its versatility. You can top it off with grilled pork, chicken, beef or veggies, and flavor the stock with beef granules, scallions, garlic, no garlic, ginger… the options are endless. Bonus: it’s super easy to make.
1 Cup white rice, uncooked
4 Cups water
1 32-ounce carton chicken broth
5 Cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1-Inch ginger, peeled
1 Tablespoon salt
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
1/4 Cup frozen peas
2 Eggs, fried and julienned
2 Stalks scallion, chopped
2 Chicken sausages, grilled and sliced. (You can top it off with meat of your choice. I also top it with Spam or Jimmy Dean’s breakfast sausage.)
Rinse the rice until the water is clear. In a large pot, add all the ingredients except the pea, sesame oil and toppings. Mix gently.
Bring the pot to boil. Turn the heat to low and cook uncovered for a about an hour and half or until it’s the consistency of a think broth. Jook should not stick to spoon or spatula. You want a silky texture. Take out the ginger.
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