A fabulous Girl’s Getaway Day 1 (Central Coast, CA)

An array of different color Sand Dollars from Capitola Beach, California
An array of different color Sand Dollars from Capitola Beach, California
An array of different color Western Sand Dollars from Capitola Beach, California

I always LOVED these little creatures called sand dollars…and I never even imagined that I would be collecting so many of these on my recent girl’s getaway trip to the Central Coast area of California. Of all my years visiting various beaches throughout the US, this is the first beach where I saw so many of them. The image above are of all the different color sand dollars we collected during our walks on the beach. I looked up about these sand dollars and it seems there are several varieties and ours is the Western or Pacific sand dollars. I personally think these are the prettiest of all of them.

Our most relaxing and healing girl’s getaway was to the wonderful area of Moss Landing and Pajaro Dunes in Watsonville, California. The five of us first drove to Santa Cruz for lunch and then stayed in a cute beach cottage in Pajaro Dunes overlooking the ocean.

beach house view from pajaro dunes
Pajaro Dunes beach house view – we were just 2 minutes walk from the beach
Chairs in the balcony of our Beach House in Pajaro Dunes, CA
Chairs in the balcony of our Beach House in Pajaro Dunes, CA

For some reason, being together with my California friends and enjoying some simple good times really made me so thankful for everything and realized how lucky I was in so many ways. I know people say this kind of thing all the time… But for me, this was something that was missing from my life lately. Being away on this trip made me realize how I have actually become quite a grumpy old woman lately…because I just could not get over my last couple years in Korea. I think I may have not really posted much about my times in Korea – honestly, I had quite a hard time there.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, my hard times there was not all simply because I was in Korea. I did miss my home in CA but I did enjoy some really fabulous Korean and other foods, re-experienced Korean culture, learned a whole lot about Korean food and most of all, really enjoyed spending time with my family and friends in Korea. But, with Coco (my dog) dying, with my own health issues (I still have scars from it…) and many other things like having a mid-life crisis..:))..things were not at all easy for me there. I don’t think I am ready to talk all about it yet – I may write more about this some day once I get a good perspective of all that has actually happened.

Anyway..this girl’s getaway trip ended up being truly therapeutic for me. Simply being silly with friends, just being free to do whatever..drinking wine while watching the sunset…all the things girls love to do, we got to do…

So, as I always do, I took pictures of restaurants, foods and picturesque settings. Hope you like them!

 

MrToots Coffeehouse in Capitola, California
MrToots Coffeehouse in Capitola, California – our afternoon coffee break
Capitola Beach view from Mr Toot's balcony
Capitola Beach view from Mr Toot’s balcony – coffee was wonderful too!!

OK, now about food…

First day dinner was at Phil’s in Moss Landing. Their Cioppino is so famously good that Bobby Flay challenged Phil in his Thrown Down show and Phil actually won over Bobby Flay!!! Sadly, I only learned that AFTER I ordered this amazingly delicious Crab Fettucine –

Dungeness Crab Fettucine at Phil's Fish Market at Moss Landing, CA
Dungeness Crab Fettucine at Phil’s Fish Market at Moss Landing, CA – So Yummy!!

My hands totally got messy trying to crack and eat the crab!! As you see here, I was totally ready to go to war with the crab.  I just needed to make sure I did not splatter tomato sauce all over my lovely girl friends… Hopefully I didn’t…did I, girls??

I am all ready to eat my crab fettucine at Phil's Fish Market!!
I am all ready to eat my crab fettucine at Phil’s Fish Market!!

Honestly though.. crab fettucine was just really too delicious for me to worry about any of that! I think my friends had a good time just watching me eat.. :)) For dessert, we did a take out of Phil’s Chocolate Lava Cake and ate them back at the beach house with some wine to end the day. Oh! what a day!…I slept so well dreaming about finding more sand dollars the next morning and enjoying more good food in Carmel, CA.

I will post about Day #2 soon.

 

 

 

 

 

Easy and Pretty Millle-Feuille Nabe (Shabu Shabu)

Mille Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu) ready to cook - www.kimchimari.com
Close up of Mille-Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu) with layers of cabbage, perillla and beef - ready to be cooked! - www.kimchimari.com
Close up of Mille-Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu) with layers of cabbage, perillla and beef – ready to be cooked!

Shabu Shabu (see my Shabu Shabu Korean Style recipe) and really good Japanese Nabe was one of the foods I missed the most when I first came to US some 20+ years ago.  Although these foods have origins in Japanese cuisine, just like how Pizza has totally become part of American food, shabu shabu and nabe have become very much a common food in Korean food scene. In Gainesville, Florida (where I lived as graduate student with my husband) there was no restaurant that served good Japanese or Korean at the time. In fact, in those days, there were very few Asian restaurants to begin with. I think Gainesville only had 1 Korean restaurant, 2 Japanese restaurants and a few Chinese restaurants in the early 90’s.  But definitely no restaurant served shabu shabu or good nabe (stew).

We sometimes drove for hours to Orlando or Jacksonville in search of some better Korean food, only to be disappointed a lot of times because it was not what I was imagining and hoping to taste. Kimchi jjigae that used kimchi that was not sour tasting and was seasoned with vinegar to imitate the taste, japchae/chopchae that was refrigerated and reheated, fish maewoontang that used frozen fish, I mean.. it kind of upsets me even now just to think about those bad Korean foods that we ordered and ended up paying with our precious grad student stipends. This is probably why I ended up learning to cook so many Korean dishes at home because there was no other way to eat them.

Now jumping 20 years ahead in time, in 2014, while I was in Korea, I was watching one of my favorite TV program on the Korean cooking channel Olive which was 오늘 뭐먹지? (Ohneul Mwo Meokji?). It means “What shall we eat today?” It’s a show hosted by two famous Korean celebrities: Sung Si-kyung (singer) and Shin dong-yup (comedian). They invite chefs and cooks from various restaurants to learn their famous dishes by cooking together. I liked the show because they cook all different cuisines – Italian, Japanese, Chinese, Korean,..and you also get to see these guys goof things up even though they try to really follow the instructions. And one time I saw this Mille-Feuille Nabe (Shabu Shabu) being made on the show and I really wanted to try making it at home.

This Mille-Feuille Nabe (also called Thousand Leaves Hot Pot) not only looks pretty and taste great, it also overcomes one downside of shabu shabu – having to wait while the food is being cooked at the table. And then wait some more until the next batch is cooked…Shabu Shabu done this way means everything is cooked all at once which makes it great for large and/or impatient families. ;) Mille-Feuille Nabe (Shabu Shabu) is also great as a party menu because you can prepare everything ahead of time and just cook it right after your guests arrive. Recipe here is a modified and more accurate version as some parts don’t have any exact measurements and they also use some ready made sauces that are not easily available outside of Korea.

Servings 4                   Cooking Time: 40 (prep 30 min)                    Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients

  • 1 lb (450 g) very thinly sliced beef – prime rib eye for shabu shabu
  • 1 napa cabbage
  • 1 – 2 package perilla leaves (25 – 30 leaves)
  • 3 dried shitake mushrooms
  • 3.5 oz (100g) 1 pack Brown Beech Mushrooms (Buna Shimeji)
  • 3 oz (85 g) 1 pack Enoki mushrooms
  • 6 oz (170 g) 1/2 pack bean sprouts
  • 2 green onion
  • 1 pack of Konnyaku or Miracle Noodles
  • 1 lemon (for sauce)
  • For Stock
    • 10 Cups (2.5 quart, 2.3 liter) water
    • 1 piece dried kelp (다시마 dashima) about 4 x 3 in (10 x 7 cm)
    • 15 pieces dried anchovies
    • 1 big piece of radish ( palm size, 1 in (2.5 cm) thick)
    • 1/2 onion
    • 2 dried shitake mushrooms
    • Season to taste later with 1 Tbs dark soy sauce, 1~2 tsp sea salt
  • For Sauce
    • 1 Tbs regular dark soy sauce
    • 1 Tbs rice vinegar
    • 1 Tbs lemon juice
    • 1 Tbs chopped lemon peel
    • 1 Tbs chopped fresh garlic (optional)
    • 2 Tbs anchovy stock (from above)
    • 1 Tbs maesil syrup (plum extract syrup) or 2 tsp sugar
    • 1 Tbs chopped Korean green chili pepper or any other green chili
  1. Soak dried shitake mushrooms in warm water to fully rehydrate.
  2. Start stock by adding water, radish, anchovies, kelp, dried mushroom, onion to stock pot. Bring to boil and quickly lower to simmer. Simmer (should NOT be bubbling) for at least  30 min and season with 1 Tbs soy sauce and 1~2 tsp sea salt to taste. It should taste slightly under seasoned. Cool.
  3. Clean, wash cabbage and rip out the outer bigger leaves. Drain.
  4. Clean perilla leaves, bean sprouts, green onions and mushrooms. Shitake, Enoki, Brown Beech Mushrooms go in this recipe because they maintain great texture even when cooked. Shitake especially has great flavor!

    Ingredients for Shabu Shabu Mille Feuille (Shabu Shabu Nabe Style) www.kimchimari.com
    Ingredients for Mille-Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu)
  5. Now let’s make some shabu shabu mille feuille (thousand leaves)!! Start stacking by layering cabbage leaf -> perilla leaves -> shabu shabu beef. Like So –
    Layering cabbage, perilla and beef for mille-feuille nabe (shabu shabu) www.kimchimari.com
    Layering cabbage, perilla and beef for mille-feuille nabe

    The beef slice used here is what’s sold as Chadolbaegi (see my Know your beef cut! post for more info on Korean beef cuts). Usual Chadolbaegi cuts have more fat but this one didn’t. The original recipe uses both chadolbaegi (brisket cut against the grain) and rib eye cuts. I only wrote rib eye in the ingredients list because I found these chadolbaegi slices can get a little tough since there is little fat. If you want to have tender, melt in your mouth beef slices, use well marbled rib eye or tenderloin instead.

  6. REPEAT cabbage -> perilla -> beef until you have 2 sets and then top with cabbage.
    nabe mille-feuille stack with rib eye
    shabu shabu mille-feuille stack with rib eye

    Mille-feuille stack with cabbage, perilla and beef - completed for Thousand Leaves Nabe
    Mille-feuille stack with cabbage, perilla and beef – completed for Thousand Leaves Nabe
  7. Cut the cabbage stack into about 2 to 2.5 in (5 – 6.5 cm) slices. Adjust width according to how deep your pot is.

    cutting mille-feuille stack for thousand leaves hot pot (nabe)
    cutting mille-feuille stack for thousand leaves hot pot (nabe)
  8. Layer the bottom of the pot with bean sprouts. Add more or less bean sprouts to adjust the height of the stacks. Turn stack sideways and fill up the pot from the edges and work your way towards the center.  It looks most pretty when the stacks fill up almost to the top of the pot and the stacks are staggered.
    filling up pot for mille feuille hot pot (nabe)- www.kimchimari.com
    filling up pot for shabu shabu mille feuille (nabe)

    filling up pot for shabu shabu mille feuille nabe- kimchimari.com
    pot almost filled for shabu shabu mille-feuille nabe with center empty
  9. Now, add mushrooms in the center.

    easy and pretty shabu shabu mille-feuille nabe - kimchimari.com
    easy and pretty shabu shabu mille feuille nabe
  10. Add anchovy stock until the ingredients are almost covered and top with some gonnyaku (miracle) noodles.
  11. Cover and bring to boil on med high heat. Uncover and keep cooking on med high heat for 10 min or until the cabbages are soft.

    mille feuille nabe (shabu shabu) boiling with green onions and gonnyaku noodles added
    mille feuille nabe (shabu shabu) boiling with green onions and gonnyaku noodles added
  12. While you wait, peel and chop some lemon skin. Also squeeze fresh lemon juice. To the lemon peel and juice, mix in soy sauce, vinegar, sugar or maesil extract, stock, chopped green chili and garlic.

    sauce for mille feuille nabe with lemon, soy sauce, garlic and green chili
    sauce for mille feuille nabe with lemon and soy sauce

Now you are ready to serve!!!

individual serving of mille-feuille nabe (shabu shabu) with broth
individual serving of mille-feuille nabe (shabu shabu) with broth

Above is an individual serving of Mille-Feuille Nabe (Shabu Shabu) with broth, garnished with fresh perilla and enoki mushrooms.

Serving suggestions

  • For a party, assemble the ingredients ahead of time in the pot and also make the stock and keep them separately refrigerated up to a day. Take out the pot and the stock about 1 hr before and bring to room temperature. 10 min before guests are ready to eat, boil the nabe or cook at the table.
  • Serve the sauce in individual sauce bowls so guests can dunk in the sauce before eating.
  • Either buy or serve creamy peanut sauce in addition.
  • Kimchi or a spicy, garlicky dish goes great with this nabe.
  • Some people may prefer to have more meat – double up on the meat for extra meaty flavor.
    Mille Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu) ready to cook - www.kimchimari.com
    Mille Feuille Nabe (shabu shabu) ready to cook

    smaller mille-feuille nabe with sauces www.kimchimari.com
    smaller individual serving size mille-feuille nabe with sauces

 

Cold Jellyfish Salad (Haepari Naengchae 해파리 냉채 ) with starflower

Korean jellyfish salad (Haepari Naengchae) with lemon and borage petals
Korean Cold Jellyfish Salad (Haepari Naengchae) www.kimchimari.com
Korean Cold Jellyfish Salad (Haepari Naengchae) with cucumber, carrots, shrimp and meyer lemon.

Really? Jellyfish?? Can you eat jellyfish? Yes, of course. Why not?..I don’t think it’s that different than eating squid..I am pretty sure that I tasted jellyfish even before I knew what it was. And don’t worry about the jellyfish poison, the tentacles are all removed before they are packaged.

If you eat the jellyfish without thinking about it, it is pretty darn good. It actually doesn’t have any strong flavor but has great texture; it’s a little bit chewy and a little bit crunchy. It’s kind of like chicken cartilage.  I think it’s one of those things where you either love it or you don’t. My husband is not a jellyfish or cartilage guy but I love both!

If you can’t get jellyfish or you just don’t like it, omit the jellyfish.  Cheonsachae (천사채) can be also be a great substitute because it has similar texture and not much of a particular flavor. Cheonsachae (Angle Noodle or Seaweed Noodle) are Korean half-transparent noodles made from the jelly-like extract left after steaming kombu, without the addition of grain flour or starch. (wikepedia). Both jellyfish and Seaweed Noodle are very low calorie food, so it’s also great for your diet!

Korean Jellyfish Salad (Haepari Naengchae) is an essential dish to any Korean party menu. Especially in the summer, served cold, it pairs wonderfully well with rich foods like Kalbi and other grilled meats, fried dishes like Yache Twigim and/or various Jeons like Beef and Perilla. You will agree with me that a respectable Korean banquet is never complete without Jeons!! Although I kind of think Jeons take a looong time to make and you end up with just one dish.

Anyway, jellyfish salad is also a great dish to prepare beforehand, keeping chilled in the fridge and you only need to assemble when the guests arrive. I LOVE dishes like that, don’t you? When preparing a party menu, it’s not a matter of how many dishes you have, it’s how they all work together.

Traditional Haepari Naengche only uses cucumber and jellyfish and only uses vinegar for the sour taste. But I have a beautiful Meyer Lemon tree in my back yard and I just love the freshness a lemon brings to the dish, so I added some lemon. And it came out even more delicious! Many newer recipes add more colorful vegetables like red bell peppers but I decided to add carrots as my twist to the dish. I think carrots add more substance and texture that can stand up to the jellyfish pretty well.

Servings: 4               Cooking Time: 1 hr (inactive 45 min)            Difficulty: easy

Ingredients

  • 6 oz (170 g) salted jelly fish (haepari)
  • 1 english cucumber, julienned
  • 2 small or 1 medium carrot, julienned
  • 2 T rice vinegar
  • 1 T sugar
  • Dressing
    • 1 T rice vinegar
    • 1 T sugar
    • 2 tsp dry oriental mustard + 1 T water
    • 1 T meyer lemon (2 tsp regular lemon)
    • 1 tsp salt
  1. Korean Jellyfish usually comes in a bag, heavily salted for preservation. Rinse jellyfish with water couple times to get rid of all the salt and let it soak in cold water for about 45 min.

    Rinsed jellyfish for Korean jellyfish salad (haepari naengchae)
    Rinsed jellyfish for Korean jellyfish salad (haepari naengchae)
  2. While the jellyfish is swimming in water, julienne cucumber. A technique that many Korean chefs use is to first peel away the outer skin and flesh part of the cucumber, omitting the seeded center.
    Korean cucumber julienning technique
    Korean cucumber julienning technique – peeling outer layer
    julienning cucumber using Korean technique
    julienning cucumber using Korean technique

    It is called “dolyeo kkaki( 돌려깍기)” in Korean which means to shave in circular fashion. I am usually not a huge fan of fancy cutting techniques just for the sake of being fancy but this one has a purpose because it keeps only the very crunchy part of the cucumber.

  3. Julienne carrots into similar sizes. I used yellow and purple carrots here but you can use whatever carrot you like.

    carrots and cucumber julienned for jellyfish salad
    carrots and cucumber julienned for jellyfish salad
  4. I am using pre-cooked frozen shrimp here again. Just thaw and then halve the shrimps lengthwise.
    Sliced shrimps for Korean jellyfish salad
    Sliced shrimps for Korean jellyfish salad

    You are welcome to use fresh shrimp if you’d like, just cook, peel and slice similarly.

  5. Make the oriental yellow mustard paste by mixing 2 tsp dry mustard powder with 1 T water.
    Korean yellow mustard (Gyeoja) made from Oriental Mustard powder www.kimchimari.com
    Korean yellow mustard (Gyeoja/Kyeoja) made from Oriental Mustard powder

    Leave it alone for 4-5 min or more for the flavor to fully develop. If you’re too lazy to make the paste, use the yellow mustard tube but be prepared to use lot more of the paste because the flavors are just not as full bodied and strong as the powder.

  6. When the jellyfish has been in the water for over 40 min, boil some water (3 cups?). Rinse and drain jellyfish into a steel or silicone colander (because you will be scorching the jellyfish with boiling water). Pour boiling water onto the jellyfish evenly and they will shrivel up like this!
    Jellyfish flash cooked with boiling water
    Jellyfish flash cooked with boiling water

    Be careful and DON’T COOK the jellyfish!! Just SHOCK it so that jellyfish (haepari) gets even more crunchy and less chewy. Some recipes use jellyfish without this step and it will still be OK but I think this really gives a better texture.

  7. Season jellyfish with 2 T vinegar and 1 T sugar and marinade for at least 10 min. You can leave in the fridge overnight and  it will taste even better the next day.  NOTE:: Sometimes jellyfish can smell a little bit. What to do if the jellyfish smells a little bad? Add some extra lemon or even add a bit of gingerale or sprite to the marinade to help get rid of any unwanted smell.
  8. Make dressing by mixing mustard, vinegar, sugar, lemon juice and salt and set aside.
  9. Serve chilled, either all the ingredients separately and mix with dressing at the table
    different ways of serving Korean jellyfish salad (haepari naengchae) www.kimchimari.com
    different ways of serving Korean jellyfish salad (haepari naengchae) with meyer lemon slices and borage flowers

    or toss everything together and serve. Hope you enjoy it with your friends and family this summer! Let me know how you like it!!

Few more things..

So what are the purple flowers in the water bowl and also on top of the jellyfish salad (haepari naengchae)? It’s Starflower (aka Borage)! A new exciting discovery for me!! A great find at my local Whole Foods. They where selling this in a pot this spring, I brought it home and planted it. Did you know that these cute purple flowers are edible and taste like cucumbers?!! It’s actually eaten in salads and as tea in Mediterranean cuisine. So I added some Borage petals to my Haepari Naenchae for added cucumber flavor and for added prettiness. :))

Borage plant growing in my backyard
Borage plant growing in my backyard
Korean jellyfish salad (Haepari Naengchae) with lemon and borage petals
Korean jellyfish salad (Haepari Naengchae) with lemon and borage (starflower) petals

Tips

  • Prepare jellyfish and cucumber, carrots separately, a day ahead of any party.
  • Additional ingredients to add – cooked egg strips (jidan), imitation crab meat.
  • Add freshly chopped garlic on top and some red chili pepper oil for extra zing!

Mint and Basil Hottoek?!

Korean Sweet Pancake (Hotteok/Hodduck) with mint-www.kimchimari.com
Pink Vine Rose in my back yard www.kimchimari.com
Pink Vine Rose in my back yard
Kale growing in JJ's garden www.kimchimari.com
Kale growing in JJ’s garden

Really?? You may think that’s the strangest thing you ever heard…well, just follow my story a little bit…

Warm and sunny spring days are now in full force in our lovely California and I can even feel the summer around the corner. And unlike the last two years, when I dreaded the coming of the hot muggy (OMG, I get hot just thinking about it!) summer in Korea, I am very much looking forward to summer this year. Why? Because summer sun means my vegetables and fruits will be growing by leaps and bounds in my garden! Growing and picking your own fruits and vegetables makes me sooo happy. If only we had enough water in California…

Anyway, I was looking around my garden the last week and saw all my beautiful herbs in addition to my veggies and thought…what if I used these amazing herbs in making hotteok!!?? Why not??

I started to experiment and believe it or not they all actually work!! Some better than others because herbs with robust flavors needed to be used sparingly. But Oh MY… I was SO HAPPY that it worked and equally happy that I could take these pretty photos of Korean hotteok/hoddeok/ hottok with these beautiful fresh herbs.

So first, what herbs come from my garden?  I’m sure you probably don’t need help with identifying these most common herbs that can be easily grown in your garden: rosemary, basil, mint, sage and lavender. But I bought this slate board and chalk recently….and I always wanted to do something like this :) – so here it is! Whether you need it or not – haha.

Chart of common garden herbs: rosemary, basil, lavender, mint, sage www.kimchimari.com
Chart of common garden herbs: rosemary, basil, lavender, mint, sage

In order to make my herb Hotteok/Hoddeok/Hottok (Korean sweet dessert pancake) all you need to do is chop rosemary, slice mint, basil and sage very thinly. For lavender, take off the tiny flower blossoms and buds from the lavender flower. Add each of these herbs with the sugar filling.

Mint sugar filled hotteok/hodduk (Korean sweet dessert pancake)
Adding Mint to sugar filled hotteok/hodduk (Korean sweet dessert pancake)

When cooking hotteok in the pan, put herb to the uncooked side before turning it over. And you will have a very pretty and colorful hotteok with delicate flavors.

Korean Sweet Pancake (Hotteok/Hodduck) with mint-www.kimchimari.com
Korean Sweet Pancake (Hotteok/Hodduck) with mint

 

Rosemary Hotteok (Korean Sweet Pancake) www.kimchimari.com
Rosemary Hotteok (Korean Sweet Pancake)
Lavender Hotteok (Korean sweet dessert pancake with fresh lavender blossoms) www.kimchimari.com
Lavender Hotteok (Korean sweet dessert pancake with fresh lavender blossoms)
Sage Hotteok/Hoddeok/Hottok www.kimchimari.com
Sage Hotteok/Hoddeok/Hottok
Basil Hotteok/Hoddeok (Korean sweet dessert pancake) www.kimchimari.com
Basil Hotteok/Hoddeok/Hottok (Korean sweet dessert pancake)

Now you ask – what’s my favorite? I would say it’s the basil. I ate the basil hotteok with some extra fresh basil on top and it was really amazing!! Well, I hope make these with your loved ones this weekend (or next) and like them as much as I did :)

Enjoy!

JinJoo

Hotteok (호떡)- Korean Sweet Dessert Pancake

Korean Sweet Pancake - Hotteok/Hodduck (호떡) www.kimchimari.com
Korean Sweet Pancake - Hotteok/Hodduck (호떡) www.kimchimari.com
Korean Sweet Pancake – Hotteok/Hodduck (호떡)

At the corner of every neighborhood in Seoul, especially in the winter when your nose and fingers are so cold, they feel numb…. you will always find a cart on the street that sells this piping hot Korean sweet dessert pancake called Hotteok/Hodduk (호떡). If Korean ice bingsoo is a must have cool-down food in hot summers in Korea, this warm and syrupy hotteok is a must have food for the freezing cold winters. The moment you bite into this pancake, the hot cinammony syrup will ooze into your mouth. Chewy dough with the fried crispness on the outside and the sweet sugar syrup with bits of nuttiness makes it one of my favorite Korean snack/dessert since childhood days.

My husband also LOVES hotteok. He will eat it hot or cold,  for breakfast, as a snack, as a dessert and maybe even as lunch- if I let him. :) He ate 3 hotteoks in one sitting as dessert just now and was mumbling to himself that his breakfast menu for tomorrow is now decided. It will be.. hotteok!! ;)

As much as I love hotteok, in recent years it has been hard for me to eat them often because I always had indigestion problems.  I don’t have celiac disease but still gluten bothers me a lot of times. Certain types of gluten foods eaten a certain way (e.g. plain hard roll on an empty stomach) will create problms for me and definitely give me indigestion, gas and even diarrhea afterwards. Sorry, not the best topic for food blog but I had to be real~ ;)

Towards end of my stay in Korea, I discovered a sweet flour hotteok mix from hansalim (한살림)  which was much better for my digestion. There are popular big brands that claim it’s a sweet rice flour hotteok recipe but it actually only has about 3-4% sweet rice flour which is basically nothing. The hansalim hotteok mix that I like has more than 40% sweet rice flour and we actually like the dough better. It comes out more crunchy on the outside. So after several tries, I created this recipe that tastes just as good and also is just as easy on my stomach.

Before we get to the recipe, a short history lesson on Hotteok.  The hotteok pancake has been around since the late 1920’s in Korea, originally made and sold by Chinese refugees who arrived on boats into Incheon. There are similar yeast dough pancakes in Chinese cuisine which are savory using ingredients like chives. But somehow this sweet variation with sugar filling gained the most popularity in Korea and have stuck around for almost 100 years. These days, there are hotteok with with pumpkin and sunflower seeds called ssiatt hotteok/hodduck (seed hotteok) and even some with cheese in them.

Makes: 10  4″ pancakes      Cooking Time: Inactive (3 hrs + 10 min) +  20 min   Difficulty: Medium

  • 1 cup (130g/4.5oz) all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (130g/4.5oz) sweet rice flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp instant dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup (177 ml/ 6 oz) water +  optionally 2~3 T more
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • vegetable oil for frying (at least 6 Tbs or more)

For stuffing

  • 1/2 cup unbleached sugar (brown sugar is also good)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  1.  Add 1 tsp sugar and 1 tsp dry yeast to 3/4 cup warm to hot water. Let stand for 10 min. (This is to proof yeast) Water should be around 120~130 °F (48~54°C) which is a bit hotter than hot bath temperature. Since it’s instant dry yeast, you can just use it as part of the dry ingredients but I found that it works much better if you mix it with water first.
  2. Measure and mix all dry ingredients (flours and salt).
  3. When the little yeast guys have all come alive and are bubbly, mix 1 and 2.

    proof yeast by adding yeast to sugar water www.kimchimari.com
    proof yeast by adding yeast to sugar water
  4. Mix yeast sugar water with the flour mix. Dough should be fully wet and sticky. Wetter than pasta dough. Depending on how dry your flour and/or weather is, you may need to add more water. It doesn’t have to be exact so it’s OK if you end up making it too wet. Error on the side of the dough being too wet than dry.Hotteok Dough mixed, before rising www.kimchimari.com
  5. Let dough sit for 3 hrs in room temperature or keep in the oven with light turned on if your room is too cold (below 20°C/68°F). Dough should double in size when ready.Hotteok dough fully risen - www.kimchimari.com
  6. Prepare sugar stuffing by mixing sugar, cinnamon and chopped walnuts. Chop walnuts finely.
    Cinnamon sugar filling for hotteok (Korean sweet dessert pancake) - www.kimchimari.com
    Cinnamon sugar filling for hotteok (Korean sweet dessert pancake)

    If the nuts are too coarse, it can create holes in the hotteok dough as you press it down during cooking. Peanuts are cheaper than walnut so that’s what most street vendors use in Korea. If you like peanuts or any other nuts better,  go head and use that.

  7. When dough is ready, heat about 3 Tbs or more of oil in a pan over medium heat.
  8. Pour about 1 tsp of oil in your hand and rub both your hands so they become nice and slippery. Take about a golf size worth of dough in your hand and spread out with your hands until it’s a little bigger than your palm. Add 1-2 tsp of the sugar mix into the center of the dough and close up the hotteok – making it into a little round parcel.

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

     

  9. Add hotteok parcel into the pan by flipping the hand to drop the pancake onto the pan, with the smooth side (side that was stuck to your palm) facing upwards. Oil a wide spatula by dunking it in the pan. Press the hotteok and slowly flatten it until the diameter becomes about 4 in/10cm wide. If you press it too much, you will end up with a hole and the sugar content will leak and get messy. It’s OK if that happens, no biggie.

    dropping hotteok into oiled pan - www.kimchimari.com
    dropping hotteok into oiled pan
  10. Fry the pancake in oil for 3-4 min until edges start to brown. Lower heat if it starts to brown faster than that. You don’t want the heat to be too high because you want sugar to melt inside to become all nice and syrupy.

    Hotteok (Korean Sweet pancake) frying in oil - www.kimchimari.com
    Hotteok (Korean Sweet pancake) frying in oil
  11. Serve warm with some nice green tea or cold milk for kids!

    Korean Sweet Dessert Pancake - Hotteok/Hodduk (호떡) with cinnamon sugar syrup filling insde www.kimchimari.com
    Korean Sweet Dessert Pancake – Hotteok/Hodduk (호떡) with cinnamon sugar syrup filling insde

BE CAREFUL when eating hotteok hot because the filling can be really hot and you may even burn yourself so let it cool for couple minutes before you eat it.

Leftovers

Leftovers can be kept at room temperature for 1-2 days. Refrigerate to store longer. Taste best when reheated in a pan or in microwave.

Hotteok Variations

  • Make a more chewy hotteok by using 2 cups all purpose flour instead.
  • Make a healthier hotteok by using whole wheat flour instead. Dough comes out less glutinous so knead it in your hand before making the hotteok to increase the gluten.
  • Make a more modern, fusion hotteok by adding fresh herbs to them. Stay tuned for my next post to see how that’s done!
  • Use different kinds of nuts or seeds for the filling.

“Mock” Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon

Mock Kimchi Rice with Bacon
Mock Kimchi Rice with Bacon and Sauerkraut
Mock Kimchi Rice with Bacon and Sauerkraut

In addition to traditional, authentic Korean recipes, I decided I should also share some modern recipes that have Korean flavors but not necessarily traditional and also non-Korean recipes that are worth blogging about. As long as they taste yummy, why not? Right? OK, so hope you will all follow me on this new journey of mine.

This recipe is great if you have no access to Kimchi but you are craving for the taste of it. As my siblings (3 sisters and 1 brother) all live spread out between Korea and US, we try to have family reunions every couple years so that we can be all together, even if it’s just for few days. It has actually been several years since our last reunion due to various reasons but when everyone comes, our group gets as large as 20 including my mother. We  all love cooking and love eating much more! So… each family take turns shopping and cooking for everyone else.

This works out great most of the time except we usually have problems ending up with too much groceries at the end of the stay. We always joked that we end up shopping enough food to feed ourselves for a month when it is just a week! Towards the end of our vacation, we may have 3 – 4 meals worth of food out on the table at one sitting and would tell each other to “eat.. Eat.. EAT!!!”. We all probably gain a few pounds by the end these vacations…still those were happy times… ;)

Now, because each sister has a different style of buying groceries, we made it so that no one goes shopping alone. At least two with different styles always grocery shopped together so they will balance each other out.  One sister likes to buy more than less, another likes to buy less than more..you can see how that goes..haha…And I won’t say who is which. So, which end of the spectrum do I belong to? In the middle of course!! Well, to be honest, probably not. I am probably towards buying more because if there’s one thing I hate is not having enough food for people. :) As I always say, it’s better to have leftovers than have everyone eyeing the one last piece on the plate. Oh btw my brother also loves to grocery shop but he is usually interested in buying snacks – or should I say junk food?

Now, let’s talk about the menu. We all have very international tastes and we go from cooking Mediterranean Couscous to Paella but the Korean blood in our bodies require that we feed our stomachs with some kind of a Kimchi dish. And one year, when there was no Korean grocery store to be found, my sister #3 made a dish with sauerkraut, bacon and rice that was surprisingly Korean in its flavor but without any Kimchi used. Sauerkraut has that sour fermented taste just like Kimchi minus the strong smell and then the flavor of bacon is more prominent with sauerkraut than kimchi so I think this is just a heavenly combination. I always wanted to cook this dish and finally got to cook it recently.

With this weekend being Memorial Day weekend, I think this may be a perfect dish to make as potluck or if you get tired of eating all the BBQ and want something different.

Servings: 4                 Cooking Time: 30                    Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients

  • 3 cup (20 oz/540g) rice, soaked in water
  • 1 tsp red chili powder or more for spicier version
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder or 1 tsp fresh chopped garlic
  • 8 – 10 pieces of bacon
  • 2 cup sauerkraut
  • 3 1/2 cup water (if you like your rice dry and flaky), add more water (1/4 cup?) if you like your rice moist.
  1. Soak rice in water for 30 minutes and drain.
  2. Measure 2 cups of sauerkraut after draining the liquid.
  3. Cut bacon into small slices.

    ingredients for sauerkraut bacon rice
    ingredients for mock kimchi rice with sauerkraut and bacon
  4. In a nice thick pot (cast iron pot is great), add bacon slices. Render most of the fat from the bacon by frying them on medium heat for 4-5 min or until it looks lightly brown and crispy like below.

    Rendering fat from bacon
    Rendering fat from bacon
  5. Discard most of the fat and leave about 2 – 3 Tbs in the pot. (just enough to coat the bottom)
  6. Add sauerkraut, garlic powder and chili powder. Saute sauerkraut with bacon for 1-2 min. Garlic powder and chili powder is optional. Adding them really makes it taste like Kimchi. Skip these if you want, it should still be yummy.
    sauerkraut with garlic and chili powder for mock kimchi rice
    sauerkraut with garlic and chili powder for mock kimchi rice
    Sauteed sauerkraut and bacon for mock kimchi rice
    Sauteed sauerkraut and bacon for mock kimchi rice

    Doesn’t this look exactly like Kimchi?? You will be surprised how much it even tastes like Kimchi!

  7. Now add rice to pot. But WAIT!!  OPTIONALLY, you can set aside about 1/2 cup of the sauerkraut/bacon mix and later use as topping when serving. This allows extra texture and punch of flavor. Spread remaining sauerkraut and bacon evenly in pot and add soaked rice on top. Add 3 1/2 cup of water which should be enough water to cover all the rice. Because we want  sauerkraut and bacon to brown at the bottom, do not mix rice.

    Mock Kimchi Rice ready to cook
    Mock Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon is now ready to cook
  8. Cover and cook on med heat for 10 minutes. Rice should be boiling. Always smell the pot to make sure the bottom is not burning.
  9. Lower heat to low and cook for another 10 minutes or so until no or very little steam come from the pot.
  10. Turn off heat and keep covered for 3 min more.

    Finished Mock Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon
    Finished Mock Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon
  11. And now it’s done! Mix the bottom of the pot with the rice and serve with some of the topping you set aside in step 7.

    Close up of Kimchimari's Mock Kimchi Rice
    Mixed Mock Kimchi Rice
Easy mock Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon
Easy mock Kimchi Rice with Sauerkraut and Bacon garnished with perilla leaves

Best places to eat in Korea

Centuries old Koran Roof with rock pine (wason 와송)
Centuries old Koran Roof with rock pine (wason 와송)
Centuries old Korean Tile Roof with rock pine (wason 와송)

While in Korea, I visited many different restaurants and I took pictures of the food without really knowing when or how I will use them. My family members often complained to me with words like “OK… can we eat now?? Are you done??”- whenever I told them they could not eat until I took photos of the food. I had almost forgotten all about this until recently, stay.com contacted me for restaurant recommendations in or around Seoul to put on their tour guide. Great!! Yes, I do know some great restaurants in Seoul! Places that locals love to eat and then also some best non-Korean restaurants from all over the world that have some really delicious food.

My list of best places to eat in Seoul, Korea is now on Stay.com.  (Btw, see end of post for more info about stay.com.)

Now that I have the list, I thought I would also share the list (and more) here with my wonderful readers. I hope this list helps you find some good eats in Seoul. Bon Apetit!

Shihwadam(시화담) Restaurant in Seoul, Korea
Shihwadam(시화담) Restaurant in Seoul, Korea

시화담 Sihwadam (http://www.siwhadam.com/): A lovely literary interpretation of Korean food with a modern twist. Quite upscale and expensive but you will be transported to a world of peoms, stories and picturesque foods that are also very delicious. Located in Insadong and Itaewon – which are great area for tourists.

 

 

Gondurae Bap(곤드레밥) / Rice with Thistle Leaves
Gondurae Bap(곤드레밥) / Rice with Thistle Leaves

곤드레집 Gondurae Jip (195-16, Sinwon-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul)

One of my favorite places to go when I need to eat a great authentic, absolutely delicious, homestyle Korean food. Limited menu (5 items) but their wood charcoal grilled bulgogi and Gondurae Bap (rice cooked with thistle leaves) are Korean food at its best. Very simple, traditional Korean décor with minimal service. Located near Cheonggye Mountains(청계산), it is a favorite spot for hikers on weekends.

 

 

Kwangjang Shijang Mayak Kimbap
Kwangjang Shijang Mayak Kimbap (Opium Kimbap at Kwanjang Market) – image source (http://blog.naver.com/bl85219)

광장시장Kwangjag Shijang (88 Changgyeonggung-ro Jongno-gu, Seoul)

A visit to the past when Koreans sold everything thru traditional open markets called shijang. In addition to many clothing/fabric stores, a central food court area sells many traditional foods like Bindaetteok (Korean Mungbeen Pancake) and also the famous Opium Kimbap (마약김밥 Mayak Kimbap) where Opium just refers to the fact that it’s so good, it’s addictive like opium.

토담골 Todamgol (27, Bongeunsa-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul)

A great place to get a general introduction to Korean food. A good selection of Bibimbaps and other popular Korean menus liks Bossam (Boiled pork with Kimchi) and Dwenjang jjigae (Soybean Stew). They are known to use best ingredients shipped from all over Korea and uses no MSG.

우래옥 Wooraeok (62-29 Changgyeonggung-ro Jung-gu, Seoul)

Open since 1946, original owner was my father’s friend and have sister restaurants in New York and Washington DC. I have been going to this place since I was a little girl in the 70’s and the place was and still is simply the best place to have North Korean style Bulgogi and Naegmyeon (cold noodles in soup) in Seoul.

Jungsikdang chocolate dessert shaped like Korean kimchi urns
Jungsikdang chocolate dessert shaped like Korean kimchi urns

정식당 Jung Sik Dang http://www.jungsik.kr (11, Seolleung-ro 158-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul)

A two Michelin star restaurant by chef Yim Jung Sik that has taken Korean food to another level by bringing molecular gastronomic techniques into Korean cuisine. Fantastically good Korean fusion dishes that have beautifully delicate presentations.

 

 

 

 

예당 Yedang (5 Eonju-ro 13gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul)

This place serves really delicious, modernized Korean food using high quality ingredients while doing the best they can to bring nature into their foods. Food is very elegant and the taste is quite complex (in the most excellent way of course). A bit on the expensive side but you will not regret the visit because no matter what you order, everything will be delicious.

Great International (Non-Korean) Restaurants in Seoul

Vatos Urban Tacos in Itaewon
Vatos Urban Tacos in Itaewon and Gangnam, Korea

Vatos Urban Tacos (vatoskorea.com) – I am not a big fan of fusion food but this place serves fabulous Mexican food with a twist of Korean flavors. A must visit when you are tired of eating Korean food. Their Kimchi fries and Nacho Mama’s Kalbi are dishes you probably cannot get anywhere else in the world.

tofu burger at the plant in itaewon, seoul
tofu burger at the plant in itaewon, seoul

 

 

The Plant (https://www.facebook.com/STUDIOPLANT) – My daughter took me to this cute tiny restaurant tucked in the back alley streets of Itaewon. It’s VEGAN. I am not a big fan of VEGAN food because usually it just doesn’t taste good. But I was very pleasantly surprised at how good everything was. From yummy soups to tofu burgers to heavenly tea cakes, everything was simply good.

Their menu changes constantly so you get to have the freshest ingredients that are in season. The owners are also very sweet and started out as bloggers – Alien’s Day Out.

 

Rose Bakery in Itaewon, Seoul Korea
Rose Bakery in Itaewon, Seoul Korea

Rose Bakery 

I kind of stumbled onto this place while waiting for an appointment. It is located right next to Leeum Museum and has a very non-Korean feel to it. Simple french cafe and restaurant that uses organic ingredients for most of their menu.

Love the simple, open decor and love the fact that they give you paper and crayon to doodle on.

Great simple french style foods from salads to sandwiches and fresh bakery of course.

There’s plenty more restaurants to share but I will save the rest for another day. Till then, enjoy~ (https://www.facebook.com/rosebakerykorea)

NOTE: Stay.com is a Norway-based company, launched in 2010 by the founder of the very successful hotellweb. The same year, it was named the top best 5 web sites by TIME. It is basically tripadvisor meets facebook. Stay.com offers beautiful curated travel guides by local experts in over 150 cities. Stay lets you discover exciting attractions, restaurants and nightlife, and build your own travel guide with your friends through facebook and other social media. Thank you Stay.com for choosing me to be part of your Seoul guide.

Three color vegetables (Samsaek Namul)- Brown Gosari

Korean Three color vegetable (samsaek namul)
Korean Bracken Fiddlehead (Gosari) Namul
Korean Bracken Fiddlehead (Gosari) Namul

Brown Gosari (고사리)/Kosari or Bracken Fiddleheads namul is the last of the Korean three color vegetables (samsaek namul 삼색나물) dish that I have been blogging about.

Bracken belongs to a genus of large, coarse ferns in the family Dennstaedtiaceae. As ferns, brackens do not have seeds or fruits, but the immature fronds, known as fiddlehead greens, are eaten in different cultures. Bracken is one of the oldest ferns, with fossil records over 55 million years old having been found. In Korea, Gosari(고사리) comes usually in dried form and is eaten as a side dish or added to bibimbap, yukyejang or bindaetteok.

I love the earthy flavor and the chewy texture of Gosari but my husband refuses to eat it, so I never got to cook Gosari as often as I would have liked. Why does he not eat it? Not because he doesn’t like the taste, not because he is allergic to it, not because of the carcinogen (I talk about this at the end of the post)…but because he, like many other Korean men, believe in the myth that it reduces their stamina..lol..

I always wondered if there was any truth to that but never got around to researching about it. But you know.. yukyejang and bibimbap are just not the same without gosari but since he won’t eat them, I often ended up cooking without Gosari. So I was so happy that I chose to make gosari for this post because it was so yummy.. I forgot how good it was.

In case you are wondering where the myth came from – I researched a little bit on why one would say Gosari (Bracken Fiddlehead) is not good for men and there was nothing to support that.  The closest explanation I could find why was that uncooked bracken contains the enzyme thiaminase, which breaks down thiamine (vitamin b1). Which means eating excessive quantities of bracken can cause beriberi – a disease that can make one very weak. But in any case, this is not at all a concern if you are going to cook the bracken because the enzyme gets destroyed when you cook it. So don’t worry, be happy and eat!

Servings: 4              Prep Time: 1 day  Cooking time: 20 min   Difficulty: easy

Ingredients

  • 1.4 oz (40 g)Dried Bracken Fiddlehead (고사리 Gosari)
  • 1 Tbs soup soy sauce (guk kanjang/kuk ganjang/gook kanjang) or 1 tsp more
  • 1 Tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 T chopped green onion
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 T water
  • 1 tsp sweet rice flour
  1. Soak dried gosari in water for 24 hrs.
    Dried Bracken Fiddlehead Gosari
    Dried Bracken Fiddlehead Gosari
    Rehydrating Gosari (Dried Bracken) in water
    Rehydrating Gosari (Dried Bracken) in water

    Gosari has gotten nice and plump after soaking in water for a day.

    Re-hydrated Gosari after soaking overnight in water
    Re-hydrated Gosari after soaking overnight in water
  2. Mix 1 Tbs of water and 1 tsp of sweet rice flour and set aside.
  3. Drain gosari.
  4. Bring water to boil in a pot and blanch gosari in boiling water for couple minutes or until it is soft enough to your liking.
  5. Cool cooked gosari in cold water and drain.

    rehydrated and boild bracken fiddleheads (gosari고사리)
    rehydrated and boild bracken fiddleheads (gosari고사리)
  6. This step is quite tedious but necessary to enjoy soft Gosari: sort through gosari stems and break off any bottom stem parts that are too fibrous and hard. The way to tell if it’s too hard is to try breaking if off. If it doesn’t easily break off then it’s probably too stringy to chew. It is similar to cutting off thick woody stems off of asparagus.
  7. Line up gosari (fiddleheads) and cut into 3 in (7.5 cm) lengths. In my case, it was cutting the length into thirds.

    Cutting gosari for gosari namul
    Cutting gosari for gosari namul
  8. Put gosari in a bowl and season with soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, green onions and sesame seeds. Mix it well with your hands so it is seasoned evenly.
  9. Heat a frying pan on medium heat, add 1 Tbs of vegetable oil and saute seasoned fiddleheads for 2 min.

    Cooked bracken fiddleheads (gosari namul)
    Cooked bracken fiddleheads (gosari namul)
  10. Pour 1/2 cup of water, cover and steam on medium heat for 5 min or until most of the water has evaporated. Uncover.
  11. Add sweet rice flour water to pan with fiddleheads. Saute for another 1-2 min until well mixed.

Now it’s done!

Koreans have been eating Gosari for centuries but as I was researching about this fern, I found out that Gosari (Bracken fiddlehead) is a very controversial vegetable. On the one hand, Bracken/Gosari has many health benefits because it is high in protein, vitamin b2 and fiber. According to traditional Korean medical books, it says that Gosari can be used to treat fever, insomnia and also can clear the mind. But on the other hand, there are studies that show it increased bladder cancers in farm animals who ingested Bracken fern raw. There is also a study that say Bracken caused stomach cancer in laboratory mice due to a carcinogen in the Gosari. And there were even articles that mentioned there may be a link between the very high rate of stomach cancer in Koreans and Japanese and the Gosari being a popular vegetable in both Korean and Japanese diet.

But here are my conclusions:

  1. RAW vs COOKED – the carcinogen is water soluble and so if you cook it well in water and drain, lot of it will get washed out. The dried Gosari namul which is the kind that most Koreans eat, is first boiled and dried. And then you will see that Gosari is kind of cook to death (haha) as it goes thru several steps of rehydration, blanching, etc. So the chances of any of the carcinogen being left is very very small.
  2. Link to stomach cancer – the latest studies show the most likely cause of Korean’s stomach cancer is due to bacterial infection (h pylori) and also due to the high salt diet.
  3. If anything, Koreans eat much less Gosari than 15 years ago and the number of stomach cancer has remained steady (between 1999 to 2009) while the number of colon cancer has almost doubled along with breast cancer which they attribute largely to a more westernized diet (which also can imply Koreans eat Gosari less often).

So don’t worry, just cook these three vegetables and enjoy them as a side dish or as part of bibimbap!

three_namul_c

Bulgogi on Expo Worldrecipe homepage!

Kimchimari bulgogi recipe on Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes home page

For once, I posted too soon.. :)

I just got word from Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes that they have decided to feature my Bulgogi post on their homepage!!!! How cool is that?!!!!!

Kimchimari bulgogi recipe on Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes home page
Kimchimari bulgogi recipe on Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes home page

If you go to Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes homepage, look under Chosen For You section to see it. Now, I know you have already seen the recipe on my blog but there is good reason to visit because all recipes submitted on the site is enhanced with nutritional facts and environmental footprint analysis, consistently linked with Expo Milano 2015’s theme: Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.

If you would like to see any of my recipes with nutritional facts, please let me know and I would be happy to post it there!

Expo Milano 2015 World Recipes!

Expo Milano 2015 - Contributor - worldrecipes
Recently, I have been invited to be a part of an online world recipe book at Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes. I have now been awarded with the official Expo Milano 2015 Worldrecipes Contributor badge for my recipes that are now part of the world’s biggest cookbook!

You should definitely check out Worldrecipes!!

FYI – Expo worldrecipes is the open and crowdsourced recipe book of Expo Milano 2015.The global online recipe book, both in English and Italian, is built by a community of food professionals, media publishers, food bloggers, chefs and food organizations.

Expo Milano 2015 is a Universal Exhibition that Milan, Italy, is hosting which started May 1 and it continues until October 31, 2015. Over this six-month period, Milan will become a global showcase where more than 140 participating countries will show the best of their technology that offers a concrete answer to a vital need: being able to guarantee healthy, safe and sufficient food for everyone, while respecting the Planet and its equilibrium.

Thank you Expo Milano for allowing me to be part of this amazing project!!