I heard that there is a huge Korean community in Flushing, so I went there the other day. It took about 40 minutes to ride the subway from Manhattan.
I was so excited about visiting there that my heart started beating before getting there even on the subway. Yes, it was surprising scene! I felt like walking around somewhere in Korea!
I found a good bakery store “Koryudang” to order my favorite snack patbingsu (shaved ice with sweet red bean and fruits). Almost all of customers were Koreans. I used to make it for my children when they were young. When they came home from school in hot summer afternoon, I used to be waiting for them with ready made patbingsu. Once they came home, I gave it to them and they were of course happy. So when I order potbingsu for myself, I can’t help thinking about my children and feel a little strange.
On the way back home to take the subway, I saw a woman sitting on the sidewalk selling so many different kinds of Korean vegetables that she grew in her home: lettuce, green chili pepper, cucumber, minari, small, cute pumpkins (for doen jang jjigae), and perilla leaves! I asked, “How much is it for all the “kkaennip” ? She paused some seconds and seemed busy counting quietly. She said, “20 dollars”. I said, “How about 15 dollars? I will make kimchi with them”. She paused again and “sure!” :) I know I should be generous to the seller. How dare I could ask for discount! But, it’s my life time bargain habit that I learned from my own mother.
When I came home, I made perilla leaves jangajji instead of making kkaennip kimchi because making jangajji is easier than making kimchi.
For those who may be interested in learning how to make this jangajji, check out the recipe!