Sunday, June 26, 2011

Seol-lung-tang (설렁탕)

I had dinner at Duh-keun-jib ( means "bigger house"), yes, the place was huge and busy too. The major dish there is Seol-lung-tang. It is a basically boiling hot soup made with all sorts of beef products, including bones and ox tails. It is boiled many hours to reach a milky and rich consistency. Seol-lung-tang is served with some meat and noodles (somen type) in the soup with some condiments-such as chili paste, sea salt, black pepper, and chopped scallions. Kak-tu-gi, a type of Kimchi made with Korean radish (Moo), is a must when eating Seol-lung-tang. Most places that have Seo-lung-tang on their menu usually have their own secret recipes to make Kak-tu-gi, handed down for generation by generation. 

 ox-tail, which was used to make soup(I think),  is cooked again on a thick stone grill pan with lots of vegetables. 
 rice is cooked and serve on a thick stone pot too. I enjoyed the dried date on top.
Seol-lung-tang is definitely a comfort food, even in summer time....

Friday, June 24, 2011

supermarkets in Seoul

 sun dried fish
freshly baked walnut pans, which doesn't necessarily taste like walnut
I like the one with sunny-side-up egg in the middle
a common scene of supermarket in Seoul, very clean and organized
 these yeasty breads are fantastic, have bean paste filling inside
 one of the tasting tables-roated and caramelized duck breasts, yum!
a showcase of traditional Korean banchan-Jeon
even high end chocolates from Switzerland, fantastic!

I feel supermarkets are more interactive in Korea. Rather than following numbers of aisles, you see lots of islands and show cases where you will be more engaged with the vendors and hand-on experiences. It is absolutely proper to ask to taste foods before buying and the vendors will be happily explain about what they are selling. What I love the most about the supermarkets here is that we can easily find artisanal foods and local specialties. Most of the produces are very seasonal and local, which isn't that much surprising to think Korea is a small country. 

food court in Seoul

I've been to a food court in Hyundai department store which is in walking distance from my house this afternoon. Most of the big supermarkets and shopping malls have food courts in Korea. The food courts in Seoul is  phenomenal! The selections are huge and trendy! I love to look around the show cases of patisseries and boulangeries. If you are lucky, you could do full course sampling, from Bulgoki to Ddeuk and some freshly baked goods.

I am addicted to these bagel these days. They make small batches of bagels all day long. These bagels are so soft and extra chewy at the same time. The one I love is small, bite-sized bagel which has gooey cheddar cheese filling inside. Yum!

 Thank god! The macarons didn't disappoint me. 
 I was impressed to see truffle, foie gras and gorgonzola! I tasted yuzu flavor but I'll try foie gras next time.
This is just a small fraction of the show cases.....

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

things I love in Korea

I have been to a local supermarket ( not the traditional kind, which is even more fun) near my parents house in Seoul. I am always amazed to see refrigerator section here. The picture below shows "Just" Tofu section. We can find whole varieties of tofus, for any kinds of cooking or even fresh warm tofu if you are lucky. It is such a staple ingredient on Korean table that I can't think of any refrigerators without a couple of tofu boxes. 

Another scene which always catches my eyes is the sea food section. This little corner below is daily selection for "sea food hot pot"(Hae-mul-tang).  We can choose some fresh ingredients from sea depends on your mood. 
It was such a pity that I was lost in tasting food here and there at tasting stand that I wasn't able t take more pictures. I ended up impulse grocery shopping again.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

O ya in Boston

It was very fun to watch the chefs work. They were unbelievably organized and immaculate, something I can't learn....
 Kumamoto oyster with watermelon pearls, cucumber mignoette
taste clean and delicate
 Hokkaido sea urchin & black river Ossetra caviar
one bite melt in my mouth in no time
 Hamachi with spicy banana pepper mousse
it was a interesting piece of sushi, so tasty! 
Salmon with unfiltered wheat soy moromi, yuzu
yum!!! I didn't need wasabi soy sauce at all
 Russian fingerling potato chip with truffle
it was a quite generous portion of truffle for such a small sushi
 Kindai bluefin chutoro with Republic of Georgia herb sauce
 my favorite sushi at O ya... who would imagine pesto on toro???
 Porcelet tonkasu with seared foie gras, cabbage shiso slaw, dashi and apple sauce
the fanciest tonkasu ever in my life for sure!
 Umenoyado  Moon rabbit sparkling sake
was very sweet but surprisingly went well with the dishes I ate
 Langoustine tempura with nori, spicy langoustine sauce, lemon zest 
 House smoked Wagyu with yuzu soy
!!! speechless.. I think Japanese definitely know how to smoke so elegantly
 Fried Kumamoto oyster with yuzu kosho aioli.squid ink bubbles
I love the presentation! squid ink bubbles made my eyes closed...
 Bluefin tuna and smoked salmon tartar with warm mayonnaise, black river ossetra caviar

 Tennen madai with white soy ginger, myoga, lemon oil
clean and delicate
 Hamacho tartar with ginger ver jus sauce, spiced chile oil

 Tairagai Japanese pen shell clam with smoked salt, white soy yuzu, extra virgin olive oil

 Hampachi baby hamachi with jalapeo suace, sesame, apple myoga

 Foie gras with miso, preserved california yuzu
foie gras was freeze-dried and shaved like snow...Wow! I loved they paired it with yuzu
 Arctic char with yuzu cured, smoked sesame brittle, cumin aioli, cilantro
the dish made me to consider buying smoke gun...seriously
 Kindai bluefin otoro with wasabi oil, green onion
 Diver sea scallop with summer truffle, sake sea urchin jus, chervil
I was so sad not able to lick the dish in public
 to cleanse palate...sake and yuzu ice
 Faberge onsen egg with balck river carviar, gold leaf, dashi sauce, green onion
this one made me to think about buying a sous-vide so badly
 Grilled chanterelle & shiitake mushrooms with rosemary garlic oil, sesame froth, soy sake
just loved, loved this dish
 Seared petit strip loin of wagyu
very tasty with more generous portion this time
to finish...Foie gras with balsamic chocolate kabayaki, raisin cocoa pulp..
paired with Hanahato junmai kijoshu, aged 8 years
 this was my first savory dessert in my life, and I enjoyed it very much