I got a little bit carried away with this meal. I decided to make the stir-fried pork with Kimchee (Kimchi) and then realized it may be too spicy for little man’s taste. By this time I had the taste for Kimchee and was not about to make a menu change. Instead of taking away Idecided to give by adding Beef Bulgogi.
The first taste of Kimchee was back in July at La V, a Vietnamese Fusion restaurant in St. Petersburg. The restaurant is streamlined and modern, the staff is well versed in the offeings, and the menu is a feast for the taste buds. It was a far cry from the Vietnamese Restaurants in New Orleans where my love for this food was born. When we first moved from New Orleans to Lutz, Florida I longed for shopping trips to Hong Kong Market, lunch at Viet Orleans, and dinner at Tan Dihn.
Back to the topic at hand – the Korean Fest. Anthony Bourdain featured Los Angeles’ Koreantown on season one episode two of Parts Unknown. In this episode he introduces the viewer to Roy Choi an chef who worked extremely hard to get to where he is today. The episodes are available on Netflix.
An interesting documentary about North Korea is also available on Netflix is The Propaganda Game. Like most documentaries, this one stayed with me for a couple of days leaving me wondering who is telling the truth. I also spent some time pondering political questions such as the universal right to housing, medicine, and education.
The dishes listed below as easy to make, dinner was ready in about an hour. It was a hit with everyone at the table.
Stir-Fried Pork with Kimchee
- 1 tablespoon of peanut oil
- 1/2 pound pork butt, sliced into pieces 1/8-inch thick by 1 1/2-inches long
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 4 scallions cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 cups of Kimchee
- The Kimchee I bought from Whole Foods was delicious, it is in the picture.
- 1 teaspoon garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon Korean red pepper flakes
- If you can’t find these – or would like to save on pantry space, you can use red pepper flakes. The flavor will not be authentic but make the dish using a close enough substitute. If you enjoy it, give the real deal a try the next time.
- Heat a wok or large skillet.
- Add the peanut oil.
- Stir-fry the port for a couple of minutes, adding salt and pepper.
- Add the scallions and toss a bit.
- Add the Kimchee, garlic, and red pepper.
- Stir fry for a couple of minutes until all is hot.
- Remove to a plate and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
- 1/4 cup of white sesame seeds
- I used black sesame seeds and it turned out fine
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- Place the sesame seeds in a frying pan over medium heat and roast, stirring constantly, until they just begin to turn a light brown and smell wonderful.
- Place in a food blender, grind to a coarse texture, and stir in the salt.
- Instead of placing in a food blender, I used a mortar and pestle to grind the seeds by hand because I would rather clean this then get out the big blender and clean the small parts.
- 3 pounds of spinach
- This seems like a lot of spinach but it cooks down.
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 2 tablespoons of light soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon of Sesame Salt
- 1 tablespoon of Korean red pepper threads
- I left this out because I was not prepared ahead of time and the dish did not seem to miss it.
- Remove the tough part of the spinach stems and wash well.
- In a large, shallow pot bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil.
- Add the salt and spinach.
- Simmer the spinach for 5 to 10 minutes until it cooks down, stirring occasionally.
- Drain and cool.
- Squeeze out the excess water and place the spinach in a bowl.
- Mix the light soy sauce and sesame oil.
- Add to the spinach along with the remaining ingredients.
This can also be prepared with pork.
- 1 pound of flank steak or a reasonable substitute – ask your butcher
- The Marinade
- 2 tablespoons of Kikkoman soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of sugar
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon Sesame Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 scallions, chopped in 1 inch pieces
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 teaspoon of ginger, grated
- 1 tablespoon of sake or dry sherry
- 1 tablespoon of Korean red pepper flakes
- It is okay if you don’t have these, just use regular red pepper flakes. It will not be the same but don’t skip the dish if you can’t find them or don’t have any in your pantry.
- For Frying
- 1 tablespoon of peanut oil
- Prepare the beef by slicing into thin strips.
- Mix the marinade in a medium-sized bowl.
- Add the meat and toss.
- Marinate for 30 minutes.
- The meat can be cooked over medium-high heat in a frying pan or stove-top griddle.
- Heat the pan or griddle first; make it very hot.
- Add the oil.
- Cook the meat for 1 or 2 minutes on each side, browning it nicely.
- Garnish with sesame seeds.