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This week our Korean food fan is Andrew. His parents instilled in him an interest and love for different kinds of food from a very young age. In this way he was introduced to Korean food and has been eating it ever since. His parents sound pretty cool to me. : ) Check out the photos of delicious Korean dishes he made! All look great!
What is your name and where do you live?
My name is Andrew and I live in New York City (Brooklyn) USA.
Tell me about the first time you ever tasted Korean food. Where were you, and what did you eat?
I was brought up with a huge appreciation for food: cooking it, growing it, sharing it, and of course, eating it! My family is Italian, but my parents always encouraged me to learn about other cultures and sample food from around the world.
My mother had been to Seoul before I was born, and she was the person who first took me to a Korean restaurant. I was so young that I don’t remember where the restaurant was or what I ate, but I do remember that my mother pointed at the restaurant sign that day and taught me how to easily tell Korean writing from Chinese or Japanese writing: Korean is the only one that has circles ;)
When I moved to New York City about three years ago I started eating at Korean restaurants more frequently. Earlier this year, a friend introduced me to Maangchi’s videos. She made the food look so fun, simple and delicious that I immediately decided I would start cooking it at home!
How often do you cook Korean food?
Once a week or more! Typical Korean ingredients like rice flour, gochujang and sesame oil have become staples of my pantry.
What are your 3 favorite Korean dishes?
1) Tteokbokki was the dish that really made me fall in love with Korean food. I like the different textures and the fact that the spiciness is incorporated directly into the dish without compromising the flavor (I used to be a bit addicted to dumping hot sauce on my food, but with Korean I never feel like I need to).
2) Kimchi! I love that it can be eaten on its own or used as an ingredient. There’s something quite fun to me about making a recipe and then using the product of that recipe to make another.
3) I also really enjoy the crispiness and saltiness of pajeon (green onion pancake). Growing up in Connecticut I used to harvest wild green onions in the woods near my house, but I never knew you could make something so delicious out of them.
What’s your best Korean dish, the one that everybody compliments you on?
The one that I am most personally proud of is bo-ssam because it was a complicated recipe (really four recipes!) with an impressive end result. My boyfriend doesn’t have the same tolerance for spiciness that I do, so he likes when I make something milder like bulgolgi or gaji-namul.
First attempt at making gimbap! It’s a little sloppy, but I tried.
Braised kimchi & pork (using homemade kimchi).
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