Ask A Korean: Are You Korean Enough?

Huh?

kkagtugi2

Hot Korean

I just read a research paper questioning the Korean-American palate when it comes to Korean food.  The author questions our ability to  grasp authenticity, an implication that we have some discrepancies to overcome (?)

Doh!

kkagtugi3

Prove it

Not for nothing, but I think my aptitude on understanding Korean food is just fine. Thanks.   But I also understand that I have to make adjustments when I can’t find that dried bracken fern at my local Key Food.   Does she want to send me some?

kkagtugi1

Who else would eat this stuff?!

And I readily admit that the chile peppers I use for kimchi are Mexican, but if you read the labels on those so-called “Korean chile peppers” sold in the Korean markets, you’ll read that they’re PRODUCTS OF CHINA.  Is that authentic Korean?

kkagtugi1.a

Cube-a Gooding

The author mentioned Korean women married to white military guys having to forego cooking Korean food because these men could not stomach the smells––it was just too weird for them!  She cited these situations as examples of how the West views non-white foods as being strange, smelly, and unhygienic.

kkagtugi4

Massage with love

Oh everyone knows it’s better to be a fat fuck eating burgers and fries.  How’s that working out?

kkagtugi5

Take Care

Let’s face it, not everyone can appreciate the intricacies of Korean cuisine, like isn’t it fascinating that you can have up to nine dishes to complement your rice and soup depending on your social status? And the soup you would think is optional, but it automatically comes out with the rice.

Let’s just say that the question of authenticity becomes less of an issue as my perspective of what it means to be Korean evolves and adjusts to my life experience.   Research that!

Radish kimchi/ 깍두기

The ingredients*

2 lbs Korean radish or daikon

1-2 tbs coarse salt, Kosher is good

4 tbs red chile pepper powder (Chile d’Arbol is good)

1 tbs sugar

3 scallions, chopped

7 garlic cloves, minced or pressed (you can use more garlic if you like)

1-2 tbs ginger juice

2 tbs Korean salted shrimp

4 tbs fish sauce (to make your own click here)

The steps

  1. Cut radish into 1/2 – 3/4 inch cubes.  Sprinkle with salt and toss cubes until well coated.  Let sit for 2o minutes and drain.
  2. Rub in red pepper with your hands.  Put on rubber gloves to do this.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well with your hands (they are your best tool for making kimchi).
  4. Transfer the radish into a glass jar and let sit at room temperature for a day or two.  At this point, fermentation should be well under way and you can finish the process in the fridge.  Check on it after 5-7 days to see if it’s ready to eat.

 

*Please adjust ingredient amounts to your taste.

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