100 days old baby party (백일)


Today my hubby and I held a mini gathering at our house in honor of my second daughter’s 100th day party. I only slept for 2 hours the night before, but somehow I managed to survive the day.

The 100 days old party is a milestone widely celebrated in the Korean culture. It is held to show that your baby has survived their first 100 days, which is known to be the most delicate time for a baby’s health. Back in the days, because of poor living conditions and diseases, many babies were not fortunate enough to survive this long.

Wine was good!

I really wanted to cook more food, but with two babies under two years old…. I’m lucky enough to even eat during the day.

Cake was a perfect level of sweetness!




Hubby's backyard BBQ Steak


Finally a sunny day after all that rain in LA (something we don’t get to say too often). To celebrate, the hubby and I did a last minute backyard bbq with this huge 5 1/2 pounds chunk of bone in prime rib meat. Tasted just like eating at a five star restaurant. Steak

We generously sprinkled on some salt, added fresh ground pepper then finished off with some thyme.

Steak

My hubby’s grill set up. That first sizzle as the steak hits the hot grill is like music to our ears.

Steak

Meat and nature at its best. I was too busy eating that I forgot to take a picture of the inside!




Oxtail Soup (꼬리곰탕)


Oxtail Soup

Weather forecast says several rainy days ahead for the Los Angeles area! To prepare for this unusually wet and cold condition, I’m making what was a definite comfort food for my sister and I when we were growing up (still is).

Ingredients:

2 packs of beef oxtail (about 4lbs total)
1 whole onion
2 green onions
Salt and Pepper to taste

Oxtail Soup

Directions:

  1. Soak the oxtails in cold water to get the blood out (I usually do this overnight changing the water every so often, but several hours will be enough)
  2. Drain the oxtails, add to a huge pot and pour water just until covered. Boil once then discard water and drain (you will see brown stuff floating around)
  3. Rinse and clean the oxtails in water and throw them back into the huge pot

Oxtail Soup

4. Peel a whole onion (leaving a clean layer of the onion peel on gets rid of the gamey taste)
5. Throw the onion into the pot with the oxtails and pour as much water as you can where it won’t boil over on high heat (about few inches from the rim)
6. Boil on high heat with lid slightly covered until reduced by about half
7. Skim off the fat from the top and ladle into a bowl
8. Sprinkle sliced green onions and finish with some salt and pepper




Kimchee (김치)


Kimchee is a forever staple in our home. I have many childhood memories making boxes of kimchee with my grandma to hand out in jars to the rest of the family. It was certainly a very happy day for everyone.

Ingredients:

2 napa cabbage
1 cup – salt (I used himalayan pink salt this time, but sea salt is the best)
1/4 cup – sweet rice flour
1 1/2 cup – red pepper flakes
1/4 cup – maesil (plum flavored extract)
1 asian pear
8 – red jalapeno
1/2 of an onion
1/2 cup – garlic cloves
1 tbsp – minced ginger
2 tbsp – salted shrimp
3/4 cup – fish sauce

Optional:
1 radish
green onions

Directions:

  1. Make a salt water bath for the cabbage by adding 1 cup of salt to about 12 cups of water (it may seem too salty, but when it tastes like ocean water it is just right)
  2. Cut the cabbage into fourths
  3. Dunk the cabbage in to the salt water bath so that it seeps into every crevice of the cabbage
  4. Start stacking them into a huge bowl sprinkling extra salt onto each cabbage
  5. Pour the leftover salt water bath over the cabbage pile when done
  6. While you wait about 4 hours until the cabbage becomes slightly limp, start on making the sauce

7. To create the paste that makes the sauce stick to the cabbage, mix 4 cups of water and 1/4 cup of sweet rice flour into a pot and cook on medium heat (make sure there are no clumps of sweet rice flour, I use plastic gloves and mix manually.. but whatever works)
8. This next part is pretty labor intensive, you must stir this paste mixture for awhile (took me about 20 minutes) until it becomes thick OR when left standing it starts to boil9. When finished, add it to a bowl with 1 1/2 cups of red pepper flakes and 1/4 cup of maesil then mix all together and set aside (maesil adds natural sweetness to the kimchi)

10. In a blender, throw the asian pear, red jalapenos, onion, garlic, ginger, salted shrimp and fish sauce all together
11. Pour this mixture into the bowl of paste and mix all together

12. This is optional, but you can add radish by peeling it and slicing into matchsticks (I used my mandolin slicer) and throw in some green onions for added flavor and color

13. After about 4 hours, rinse the cabbage and drain very well (I leave it to drain while I do other errands around the house)
14. Once drained, cut out the root end of the cabbage (some people eat it, but I don’t) then slice the cabbage into small squares/rectangles
15. In a huge bowl, incorporate the cabbage with the sauce (preferably done by hand, wearing long dishwashing gloves)
16. Pack it tightly into kimchi jars or any other air tight container and refrigerate




Sookjoo Namul (숙주나물 무침)


Sookjoo namul is a very easy and fast side dish to make. The bean sprouts are cooked al dente so there is a refreshing crunch in every bite.

Ingredients:
1 bag of bean sprouts (24 oz / 1.5 lbs)
3 tbsp – minced garlic
1 tsp – salt
1 tbsp – sesame oil
Pinch of black pepper
2 green onions
1 tbsp – roasted sesame seeds (ground)

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot to a boil
  2. Throw all the bean sprouts into the boiling water until al dente (about 1-2 minutes)
  3. Strain the bean sprouts so there is no more water dripping (must strain really well because over time the bean sprouts produce more liquid)
  4. Move the bean sprouts into a large mixing bowl then add all ingredients
  5. Gently toss and enjoy



Dduk Gook (떡국)


Dduk Gook
A Korean ritual to ring in the New Year is 떡국. A dish that can be eaten anytime of the year but definitely on New Years day.
Ingredients:
1-2 handful – 떡 | Oval sliced dduk (rice cakes)
2 cups – 곰탕 | Oxtail Soup Broth & Meat
1 egg
2 pieces – 김 | Korean Laver (seaweed)
Sesame Seed
Green Onion – sliced
Salt & Pepper to taste
Directions:
  1. Put the rice cakes in cold water for 20 minutes to soak
  2. Add the oxtail broth and meat to a pot and boil
  3. Add rice cakes
  4. Mix up the egg and fry it, eventually cutting to thin strips and set aside
  5. Using scissors, cut the seaweed pieces into thin strips as well and set aside
  6. Tasting the broth along the way, add salt and pepper to taste
  7. Once the dduk rises to the top of the soup, you are ready to serve the bowl
  8. Add the sliced egg, seaweed, green onion and sesame seed as preferred

Dduk Gook 2




Sushi Gen (Little Tokyo, Los Angeles)


Lunch date with the hubby at Sushi Gen! This was the line before they were even open. Luckily, we got seated immediately at the sushi bar where we experienced their delicious omakase.Sushi Gen

Sushi Gen

Omakase means “It’s up to you”, which is a Japanese tradition of letting the chef create any plate for you. Here, the plates keeps coming until you say stop. Sushi Gen

This was one of the best sushi experiences… ever. Everything we ate was so fresh with the flavor perfect to our taste. Sushi Gen

Sushi GenWe spent $300 easily, and that is without drinks! Worth every penny.

SUSHI GEN
422 E 2nd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
T: (213) 617-0552




Korean Grape Juice - Using a juicer


4 lb Korean Grapes

2 Fuji Apples
Juicing machine (I used my hurom juicer)
I love the sweet taste of Korean grapes, but the process of eating them is not a simple “pop it in your mouth” type of deal like the seedless grapes you see around. I almost always give up eating them before I have even consumed ten.
Who in the world wants to squeeze off the skin, suck the juice out of the skin, spit the skin out, eat the flesh while searching for the tiny hidden seeds, spit out the seeds, then finally finish eating the rest of thegrape? All this work for just one grape
What to do? Throw them all in the juicer so you are left with only the good stuff.
1. Detach from stem and rinse all the grapes
2. Cut and core the apples
3. Put them all through the juicer
Grapes with Watermark 2
Grapes with Watermark 4
Grapes with Watermark 6
**Note: I added the apples to naturally increase the sweetness level



Soy Sauce (간장) Dipping Sauce


yoristory soy sauce dip

This is a great dipping sauce that can be used for many dishes. This can be used to dip the Korean pancakes, Potstickers (만두), egg rolls and more.

 

2 Tbsp Soy Sauce (Low Sodium)

2 Tbsp Seasoned Rice Vinegar
1 Tsp Sesame Oil
1 Tsp Sesame Seeds
1 Sliced Green Onion Stalk
Substitutions to make this gluten free
Replace the soy sauce for Bragg Liquid Aminos available at most grocery stores and definitely health food stores. You can also use gluten free tamari.
*Quick note: Tamari alone does not automatically mean gluten free. Always read the labels. The main difference between soy sauce and tamari is the existence of wheat. Tamari is originally from Japan and I believe soy sauce from China but used all over Asia (I could be wrong).



Buckwheat Kimchi Pancake


Kimchi Buckwheat Pancake YoriStory

Don’t let the name fool you. Buckwheat is actually a fruit seed and can be eaten as a grain for individuals sensitive to gluten. This grain is also nutritious for you and has a nice fragrant to it. Koreans use buckwheat for cold noodle dishes (냉면). 

Ingredients:

3 cups Buckwheat pancake flour mix

2 cups Ripe kimchee

1.5 cups Pork (or any choice of meat)

1/2 cup Onions

1 Korean green pepper (jalapeno if you want spicier)

1 Bundle of green onions

1 tsp Sesame Oil

1 tbsp Fish Sauce

Pinch of Salt

Cooking Oil

Water

 

Directions:

  1. Add 3 cups of buckwheat pancake flour mix to a large bowl
  2. Make a pancake batter like consistency by adding water (thinner if you want it extra cripsy)
  3. I had some pork belly on hand, so I sliced that up and cooked it up on the frying pan with a pinch of salt. Drain the oil when finished cooking and add to bowl with buckwheat flour.
  4. Dice up the ripe kimchee and onions. Slice the Korean green pepper and the green onions, leaving the green onions about 2″ long in length. Add everything to large bowl.
  5. Pour in 1 tsp sesame oil and 1 tbsp fish sauce and now your batter is ready for frying!
  6. In a large frying pan, add some cooking oil and put on medium low heat.
  7. I used a ladle that holds 1 oz and made individual sized pancakes (ended up with 18). You can make any size you want, or even make a huge pancake by filling the whole pan. Enjoy!!

buckwheat pancake yoristory

kimchi yoristory

buckwheat pancake yoristory

buckwheat pancake yoristory

buckwheat pancake yoristory

buckwheat pancake yoristory

buckwheat pancake yoristory

YoriStory Buckwheat Pancake

 

Notes:

Can be frozen and heated up on the frying pan for future enjoyment

For a simple soy vinegar dipping sauce, follow this link: