Korea has been at the heart of conversations for 100s of years. This country has seen many wars and at times, it was with themselves. At the end of World War II the internal conflicts once again came to a head and Korea made a decision, which split the country into a North and South Korea. A legend says Korea was founded by the “Dangun” dynasty in 2333 B.C. The first kingdom was Gojoseon, however its later collapse was an affect for the creation of the small kingdoms from the “Proto-Three Kingdom period.” Goguryeo, Baekje, and Silla. The three-kingdom period was around the time of Jesus. The above picture is a set of diadems; they were excavated in 1971 from the tomb of King Muryeong in Gongju, South Korea. They are part of the treasures of the Baekje Kingdom. A Diadem is a type of crown and some were worn within the bun or braids of a person’s hair. Korea has very diverse flavors and for centuries, they have loved spicy food. Red pepper flakes can be added to any of these recipes for a stronger Korean flavor!
If you have a tasty recipe to share, then please send it my way at P.O. Box 693 Leeds, 35094
-Andrew M. Armstrong
Authentic Korean BBQ
½ a Cup of puréed pears
¼ a Cup puréed onions
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon ginger
1 green onion, chopped
2 Tablespoons of soy sauce
2 Tablespoons of brown sugar
1 pinch of ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon of sesame oil
Several thin slices of carrot
1 Pound of beef, chicken or pork, washed and prepared the way you want it.
Place the meat in a bowl or dish for marinating. In a food processor, combine enough fruit and onions to get the right amount of purée mixture. Once blended, add in the remaining ingredients and blend well. Pour the mixture over the meat and marinate for 24 hours. If cooking the same day, marinate for at least 30 minutes – 1 hour. Cook the meat on the grill.
(Note):The best flavor for authentic Korean BBQ comes from cooking over red hot coals.
3 Color Layered Sandwiches
The green filling:
1 cucumber, chopped (about 2 cups)
½ a teaspoon of salt
2-3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
¼ a teaspoon of ground black pepper
The yellow filling:
4 hard-boiled eggs, with the whites removed
2 to 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon of yellow mustard
The red filling:
4 slices of cooked ham, pat dried, chopped
2 to 3 Tablespoons of mayonnaise
For the green filling, mix the cucumber and salt together in a small bowl and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes, until they sweat. Squeeze out any excess water with cotton cloth from the cucumber. Put the squeezed cucumber back into the bowl, and mix with the pepper and mayonnaise. For the yellow filling, break the yolks with a spoon in a bowl and mix in all the ingredients. For the red filling, mix all the ingredients in a small bowl. Lay 3 slices of bread on your cutting board, side by side. Divide the egg mixture into 3 portions and spread a portion on each slice. Add a slice of bread on top to each. Divide the cucumber mixture into 3 portions and spread a portion on each slice again. Add three more slices of bread. Divide the ham mixture into 3 portions and spread a portion on each slice. Add three more final slices of bread, to make a sandwich stack. Gently press each stack with your hands and cut off the bread edges. Cut each sandwich in half.
Korean Breakfast Cornbread
2 Cups of cornmeal
(Indian Head works best)
2 Tablespoons of white sugar
½ a teaspoon of salt
1 large egg
1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil
1½ Cups of milk
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 Tablespoon of butter, softened
Preheat the oven 400 degrees.
Combine the cornmeal, sugar, salt, egg, vegetable oil, and milk in a bowl and mix well. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Add the baking powder to the batter and mix well. Brush the butter all over the bottom and the sides of baking pan (8 x 8 inch square). Bake for 30 minutes. Check to see if it is done by inserting a toothpick into the center of the bread. It should come out clean. You can cook a few minutes longer to brown the top of the bread. Remove from the oven. Turn the pan upside down and let the cornbread fall onto your cutting board. Let cool for a few minutes. Cut into bite size pieces and serve.
Korean Ham Roll’s
2 Pounds of ham, chopped
2/3 a Cup of instant rice
1 can of mushroom
1/4 a Cup of onion, finely chopped
3 hard boiled eggs, chopped
2 Tablespoons of bell pepper, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons of shortening
1 teaspoon of salt
1/8 a teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of curry powder
½ a Cup of chili sauce OR tomato sauce
1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
Cook instant rice with the curry powder according to the package directions. Drain mushroom stems and pieces, reserving liquid. Cook onion and green pepper in shortening until tender. Combine the ham, 1/3 a cup of cooked rice, mushroom liquid, salt, and chili sauce. Combine remaining cooked rice, mushroom stems and pieces, onion mixture and Worcestershire sauce to make rice stuffing. Roll or pat ham mixture out on waxed paper into a 12 x 12 inch square. Top with the eggs, Spread rice stuffing over meat. Roll as a jellyroll. Place seam side down on rack in open roasting pan. Bake in moderate oven (350 degrees). 1 hour and 5 minutes. Eight servings.
2 Pounds of cabbage
(Traditionally Napa Cabbage is used)
¼ a Cup of rock salt
4 Cups of water
2 teaspoons of red pepper, minced
¾ a teaspoon of garlic, minced
½ a teaspoon of ginger root, minced
½ a teaspoon of paprika
1 Tablespoon of sugar
Wash cabbage and cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths. Dissolve rock salt in water. Soak cabbage in water 3 or 4 hours. Rinse and drain. Combine red pepper, garlic, ginger, paprika, and sugar and add to cabbage, mixing thoroughly. Pack into 1-quart jar. Cover loosely and let stand at room temperature 2 days. Chill in refrigerator before serving.
6 Pounds Napa cabbage
½ a Cup of Kosher salt
2 Cups of radishes, peeled and chopped
1 Cup of carrots, shredded
12 green onions, chopped with greens
1 Cup of water
½ a Cup of cilantro, chopped
½ a Cup garlic cloves, crushed and chopped (24 garlic cloves)
2 teaspoons of ginger, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
½ a Cup of fish sauce
¼ a Cup of your favorite pickles with brine, chopped fine
(The original recipe is very spicy. It calls for 2 Cups of hot pepper flakes. Make it according to what you like.)
2 Cups of water
2 Tablespoons of all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons of sugar (brown or white sugar)
If the cabbage cores stick out too much, trim them off. To split a cabbage in half without shredding the densely packed leaves inside, first cut a short slit in the base of the cabbage, enough to get a grip on either half, and then gently pull the halves apart so the cabbage splits open. Cut a slit through the core of each half, 2 inches above the stem. You want the cabbage leaves to be loose but still attached to the core. Dip the halves in a large basin of water to get them wet. Sprinkle the salt between the leaves by lifting up every leaf and getting salt in there. Use more salt closer to the stems, where the leaves are thicker. Let the cabbages rest for 2 hours. Turn over every 30 minutes, so they get well salted. From time to time you can ladle some of the salty water from the bottom of the basin over top of the cabbages. After 2 hours, wash the cabbage halves a few times under cold running water. Giving them a good washing, to remove the salt and any dirt. As you wash, split the halves into quarters along the slits you cut into earlier. Cut off the cores, and put them in a strainer over a basin so they can drain well. While the cabbage is salting for 2 hours, begin to make the porridge. Combine the water and the sweet rice flour in a small pot. Mix well with a wooden spoon and let it cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes until it starts to bubble. Keep stirring and add the sugar, then cook another minute or two. Remove from the heat and let it cool off completely. Pour cooled porridge into a large mixing bowl. Add garlic, ginger, onion, fish sauce, pickles, and hot pepper flakes. Mix well with the wooden spoon until the mixture turns into a thin paste. Add the radish, carrot, green onions and the cilantro. Mix well. Spread some kimchi paste on each cabbage leaf. When all the leaves are covered with paste, wrap it around itself into a small packet, and put into your jar, plastic container, or crock. Eat right away, or let it sit for a few days to ferment.
On fermentation: The kimchi will start fermenting a day or two at room temperature, depending on the temperature and humidity of your room. The warmer and more humid it is, the faster the kimchi will ferment. Once it starts to ferment it will smell and taste sour, and pressing on the top of the kimchi with a spoon will release bubbles from beneath. Once it starts to fermented, store in the refrigerator to use as needed. This slows down the fermentation process, which will make it more sour as time goes on.