Platter of nine delicacies

Gujeolpan 구절판

Today’s recipe is a special one. It’s Gujeolpan (구절판), the traditional Korean Platter of Nine Delicacies. It’s considered to be a classic dish of Korean Royal Court Cuisine, the style of cooking popular with the royal court of the Joseon Dynasty, which ruled Korea from 1392 to 1897. Unlike a lot of the Korean cuisine we know today, it’s not really spicy or pungent. It’s mild, refined, and delicate, although the mustard and garlic sauce can make your nose tingle!

It’s made up of nine carefully prepared and neatly arranged ingredients and some light crepes (miljeonbyeong: 밀전병) to wrap them in and eat ssam-style.

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Gujeolpan follows the traditional principles of obangsaek, the ancient Chinese philosophy that was adopted by Koreans a long time ago. It says that five elements govern everything in the cosmos, and every meal should contain something from the each of them to be considered well-balanced. They are represented by the colors red, yellow, white, black, and blue (or green, in the case of food). Gujeolpan has all these colors in one dish, so it’s considered very harmonious just like bibimbap.

Koreans have a special nine-section platter specially for Gujeolpan, which is also called a gujeolpan. It has eight sections around the outside for ingredients, and one section in the middle for the crepes. Of course you don’t need this platter to make the dish, but it looks nice and is actually a fine decoration as they are often decorated with mother-of-pearl.

This recipe is adapted from my cookbook. While developing the recipe I became pretty impressed with this dish: it’s light and delicious and fun to eat. When the book was done I thought I would eat it more, but I never had time to make it until I filmed this video!

One way to optimize your time when making it is to make the mustard and garlic sauce ahead of time, as well as the gyeran-jidan. Keep them refrigerated until all the other parts are ready.

I hope you try this dish someday. Let me know how it turns out!

Ingredients
Serves 4

For mustard garlic sauce:

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For gujeolpan ingredients:

  • 4 ounces rock ear mushrooms (or dried shiitake mushrooms), soaked in warm water until softened
  • 4 ounces beef brisket, cut into 2½ inch long matchsticks
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 2½ inch long matchsticks
  • 1 large English cucumber, cut into 2½ inch long matchsticks
  • 4 to 8 ounces headless large shrimp, shelled, cut in half along the back, washed
  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pine nuts, plus 5 whole nuts
  • soy sauce
  • honey
  • sesame oil
  • salt
  • ground black pepper
  • vegetable oil

Directions

Make mustard garlic sauce:

  1. Combine Korean mustard powder and 1 tablespoon warm water in a small bowl. Set aside to ferment for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add garlic, salt, vinegar, honey, soy sauce, and sesame oil to the mustard mixture and stir well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Prepare the mushrooms & beef (black)

  1. Drain the mushrooms and massage both sides with salt to remove any sand or dirt. Rinse in cold water until very clean. Stack up a few mushrooms, roll them up and then cut crosswise thinly. Put them into a bowl. If you use shiitake mushrooms, drain and remove the stems, then slice thinly.
  2. Mix the mushroom with 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sugar, ½ teaspoon sesame oil, and a pinch of ground black pepper with a spoon. Cover and set aside.
  3. Put the beef in a bowl and mix with 1 clove of minced garlic, 2 teaspoons soy sauce, 2 teaspoons honey (or sugar), 1 teaspoon sesame oil, and a pinch of ground black pepper. Cover and set aside.beef and mushrooms

Make yellow and white egg paper (gyeran-jidan):

  1. Separate the eggs, putting the yolks in one bowl and the whites in another one.
  2. Add a pinch of salt to the white yolks and beat with a fork. Strain the mixture of the egg whites over a bowl to get even consistency.
  3. Heat up a non-stick skillet. Add a few drops of vegetable oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet. Turn off the heat and wipe off the excess oil with a paper towel.
  4. Pour the whites into the skillet and tilt the skillet so the whites coat the bottom of the skillet in a thin, even layer. Let sit just until the whites are set, a few minutes.
  5. Lift the edge of the whites with a spatula and flip over. Let sit until just set. If it’s still uncooked, turn on the heat to very low and cook.
  6. Slide onto a cutting board. Let cool and slice into 2½ inch long matchsticks.
  7. Transfer to the platter.
  8. Make yellow egg matchsticks with the egg yolks using the same method as the egg whites. Transfer to the platter.

Cook the mushrooms & beef

  1. Heat a skillet and add 1 teaspoon vegetable oil and the marinated mushrooms. Stir-fry for a few minutes until tender. Transfer to the platter.
  2. Heat up the skillet and add the marinated beef and cook, stirring, until most of the moisture has evaporated and the beef is cooked, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to the platter.

Prepare the cucumber and carrot (green and red) and shrimp

  1. Mix the cucumber with ¼ teaspoon salt and let stand for 5 minutes, then squeeze gently to remove excess water.
  2. Mix the carrot with a pinch of salt and let stand for 5 minutes, then pat dry with a paper towel.
  3. Put the shrimp in a bowl and mix with 1 teaspoon sesame oil and a pinch of ground black pepper. Thread each piece of shrimp onto a wooden skewer to prevent it from curling as it’s cooked.
  4. Heat the skillet and add ½ teaspoon vegetable oil and the cucumber. Stir-fry for 30 seconds. Divide it into 2 portions and transfer to the 2 sections of the platter.
  5. Heat the skillet and add ½ teaspoon vegetable oil and the carrot, and stir-fry for 1 minute. Transfer to the platter.
  6. Wash the skillet and heat it again to medium high heat. Add 2 teaspoons vegetable oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet. Add the shrimp skewers to the skillet and cook until the undersides of the shrimp turn pink, about 1 minute. Turn and cook for another minute. Turn the heat down to low and cook until the shrimp are cooked through but not browned, another minute or so. Transfer to the platter.
  7. Cover the platter to prevent the ingredients from drying out.

Make crepes (miljeonbyeong):

  1. Combine ½ cup flour, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¾ cup water in a bowl and stir well. Strain the batter into another bowl, pressing down on any lumps with the back of a spoon. Stir again.
  2. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Add a few drips of vegetable oil and swirl to coat the skillet. Turn the heat down to low. Wipe off the excess oil with a paper towel.
  3. Add about 1 tablespoon of the batter to the skillet and spread it with the back of the spoon into a circle about 2½ inches in diameter. Repeat to fill the skillet, without overcrowding. Let the crepes cook until they are slightly translucent and the edges are a little dry, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn and cook for another minute. Transfer the cooked crepes to a large plate or a cutting board.
  4. Repeat with the remaining batter. You will have about 30 crepes.
  5. Stack the crepes in the center section of a gujeolpan. As you stack, sprinkle a few chopped pine nuts between each layer so the crepes won’t stick to each other. Put a drop of honey on the center of the top crepe and lay out the 5 whole pine nuts into the shape of a flower.

Serve

  1. To eat, each guest should place a crepe on an individual plate, add a few of the fillings as they like, drizzle with the sauce, wrap up the crepe, and eat.

gujeolpan ssam

 

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5 Comments:

  1. rootedphoenix Salt Lake City, Utah joined 7/17
    Posted October 19th, 2017 at 9:09 pm | # |

    This looksso cool. Congratulations onh the 2 million subscribers! <3

  2. BakingCindy London joined 10/17
    Posted October 19th, 2017 at 1:19 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi! Congratulations on your 2 millions viewers!!!
    I have been following your recipes for about a decade now, since I was a student!
    I made Gujeolpan a couple of months ago and it was a real labour of love, but the reactions from my Korean friends were worth it.
    Sending you lots of love from my London kitchen! If you ever need it, just tell me!


    See full size image

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted October 19th, 2017 at 11:00 pm | # |

      Wow your gujeolpan looks great! You made it with just a regular platter!

      • BakingCindy London joined 10/17
        Posted October 20th, 2017 at 3:50 am | # |

        Thank you!! It’s a 점판암 plate. Very nice to present special food.

  3. MissyD North Carolina joined 7/17
    Posted October 19th, 2017 at 8:31 am | # |

    Congratulations on 2M subscribers!!! So awesome!

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