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Andrew Salmon’s take on beer in Korea

Not to be outdone, legendary Korea pundit and one-time ZenKimchi contributor Andrew Salmon has a thing or two to say about Korea's flaccid beer duopoly (flaccid in the taste, not the power). If the government lowered the ceiling on beer production, it could release a...

Banchan pizza: A second life for side dishes

Typical of many Korean households, my refrigerator is stuffed with little containers of leftover 반찬 banchan. Many recipes for those side dishes are scaled to serve six to eight people, so the two of us always have leftovers. I can only eat so much 비빔밥 bibimbap. While...

Buddhist Temple Lunch: Day 4–OOPS!

I showed up a bit late to the temple cuisine bistro. Too late. The plates were covered, and they were packing up the food. So, that didn't pan out. I needed some lunch, but I didn't want to break the Korean vegetarian streak I've been on. I suddenly got a craving for...

Bamboo Salt Almonds

As I mentioned, I need a mid-afternoon snack. I find that a bag o' nuts does me fine. My usual mixed nuts I couldn't find at E-Mart. But I saw these. Aw, I had to try it out. Bamboo salt is a Korean way of making salt by putting brine into bamboo and roasting it over...

Restaurant: Danji, New York

The gritty Irish-American roots of the Hell's Kitchen area of New York City are giving way to a more eclectic food scene and home to Chef Hooni Kim's Danji restaurant, which is America's only Michelin-rated Korean restaurant. This was the second Korean restaurant I...

Restaurant: Kristalbelli, New York

The opening of "the next Korean barbecue restaurant" in midtown Manhattan by K-pop star and producer Jin Young Park has generated some controversy. Some think the restaurant's aesthetic is too antiseptic to provide an authentic Korean experience. Some reviews have...

My South Korean Mouth

To gain an appreciation of Korean food, I needed to learn a new language for eating – a new way of decoding the dinner table. When I first arrived in Korea, I didn’t understand any of the food I encountered. Most of it was unrecognisable, and tasting became detective work.

Kimchi Beer?

​The Korea Times​ has posted a story on two brewers, one from Ontario and the other from Philadelpia, who have incorporated kimchi into making one of their beers.

Coffee Question: Dutch coffee

I recently received a great coffee question in my inbox from ZenKimchi reader Ron Handel: ...this past week at work a parent brought me a bottle of Dutch coffee. It is in what looks close to a wine bottle. The directions on how to enjoy it are written in Korean so I...

Korean Pantry: The Pastes

When starting out your Korean pantry, the pastes are some of the most uniquely Korean components. At the Asian supermarket, I'm sure you've stared at that wall of green, brown, and red plastic tubs, wondering what they held inside. Let's demystify all that. Doenjang...

Survival Guide to Korean Coffee Part III: On Roasts

Although Korea's coffee market has matured in recent years, there are many places capitalizing on the trend but cutting all the corners they can. This is the third post in a four-part series by Steve Ward designed to teach you how to find the good hole-in-the-wall...

Amazing Grilled Octopus

I'm always excited when, after living here for eight years, I find a great food that I had never had before. Friends, meet Nakji Gguri. It's barely grilled octopus. Still rare in the middle while just kissed by charcoal flames. This particular kind was just rubbed in...

Survival Guide to Korean Coffee Part I: The Basics

Although Korea's coffee market has matured in recent years, there are many places capitalizing on the trend but cutting all the corners they can. This is the first post in a four-part series by Steve Ward designed to teach you how to find the good hole-in-the-wall...

Convenience Store Bibimbap

This is a product that came out about a year or so ago. Convenience store food has been leaning towards fresher, healthier, and more filling options. And they've been getting more Korean. You may be wondering how a Korean convenience store can get more Korean. Yet I...

Spring Herb Dishes of Korea

[media-credit id=52 align="alignnone" width="700"][/media-credit] Clockwise from the top left are seawater tofu, dallae (달래 - small wild onion or Allium monanthum), naeng-yi (냉이 - Capsella bursapastoris), and godeul bbaegi (고들뺴기 - Crepidiastrum sonchifolium).  With...

10 Days in Seoul: A 2018 food guide

This is your ultimate Seoul food guide. Reader (and friend) Żaklina had this question: Do you have recommendations or a 10-day restaurant tour guide for Seoul? My parents are coming to visit for 2 weeks, and I'm looking to take them to restaurants in Seoul. Any...

Delicious Seoul Scenes

Here are a few things I've been doing in Seoul for the last 2 weeks... Pollock stew (생태찌개 - saeng tae jji gae) in a brass pot cooked at the table.  Once ignored as a reminder of the hard times, this type of thin brass pots and bowls called yang-pun (양푼) made a...

Bulgogi – The Costco Way

You loooooooooove bulgogi, but you don't want to go out to a Korean restaurant. You're still jonesing for some of that awesome Korean grilled meat, yet you don't know how to make it at home. Maybe you think prepping bulgogi at home is more difficult than it really is....

Healthy Korean Baby Snacks

When Jian started getting her teeth we wanted to give her snacks that didn’t have sugar and a lot of sodium. When you look at the ingredients and info on even baby snacks they have a lot of sugar and salt.

Oyster Rice (GulBap)

I love the oysters in Korea. And we're in oyster season now. We have been scratching our heads thinking of something new to have for dinner. EJ had the idea to do GulBap. She steamed some rice with oysters, blanched some sprouts, and made a sauce consisting of soy...

Shin's Korea Trip – First Update

It's already been 10 days since I arrived in Seoul.  I try to keep a relaxed vacation pace, but that doesn't seem to be working (not that I'm complaining).  Here are a few photos of my first days in Korea. This was my first time to Tong Young (통영), a lovely port city...

Makkolli is not a Rice Wine, Dammit!

There are times I think the promoters of Korean food really have their heads firmly stuck in their posteriors when they promote makkolli as a rice wine. It shows an ignorance of makkolli, an ignorance of wine, and an ignorance of alcohol in general.

Bulgogi Spaghetti Sauce?

Ottogi's Fresco, the general jarred spaghetti brand for Korea, recently introduced a Bulgogi flavor. As you can see, it's "Beef 12%!" I'm not a big fan of jarred spaghetti sauces, especially ones with meat, but I had to try this. Yes, like most meat jarred spaghetti...

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