April 6, 2009

Korean for the Whole Family!

-Karalee, Dawson and Dave enjoying their first Kimchi Chigae.-

This past weekend we had the privilege of introducing my brother and his family to their first ever traditional Korean meal. And, seeing how we live in Red Deer, a small agricultural based city, we had to travel two hours south to Calgary to find an authentic Korean restaurant. So for the sixth time since being home Trev and I were able to sit down to a delicious dinner of Galbi (Korean BBQ), Bibimbop (mixed veggies and rice), dozens of side dishes and of course Korea's famous Kimchi Chigae(Fermented Chili Pepper Cabbage Soup).

-Dawson enjoying his Dak Guk (Chicken Soup).-

The meal was a hit. Dave and Karalee seemed to enjoy most everything, save the fish-cakes, while Dawson couldn't get enough and stuffed in whatever his little hand could get hold of. Becki accompanied and having visited us in Seoul enjoyed helping to introduce Dave, Karalee and Dawson to a little piece of Korean culture. It was a fun afternoon with great food and family and although it wasn't quite the same as sitting down for a meal in Seoul, it was a close as you can get in a prairie city.

-Dave learning the art of wrapping and eating Galbi (Korean BBQ).-

-Auntie Becki teaching Cooper how to drink Barley Tea.-

-Dawson was excited to try out chopsticks and for the most part did a great job. For kids his age in Korea chopsticks are the norm.-

Kimchi Chigae is said to be the fundamental ingredient to Korean culture itself. I've heard of it referred to as Korean cuisine at its finest, as a life saver, as a cancer-fighting agent. But one thing is for sure, Kimchi Chigae is essentially Korean. It is in every home, every belly and on every mind in Korea, local and foreigner alike. And so, if you are feeling adventurous (and you have access to Kimchi) here is a recipe for you. Don't be fooled by the name, it's truly delicious and slightly addicting.

Kimchi Chigae
(Fermented Chili Pepper Cabbage Soup)
-Delicious Kimchi Chigae boiling to perfection.-


1/2 lb Lean Pork
2-3 cups Sour Kimchi - cut in 1 inch pieces
1/4 cup Juice from Kimchi
2 tsp Soy Sauce
4 cups Water (add or less to make a soup consistency)
1 dash Salt
2 tbsp Crushed Red Hot Peppers
2 Cloves Garlic

  1. Cut pork into thinly sliced bite sized chunks and brown.
  2. Combine all ingredients in sauce pan and bring to a boil.
  3. Stir occasionally.
  4. Simmer until Kimchi is soft and serve over sticky white rice.
  5. Optional: Add soft tofu and chopped green onions 5 minutes before serving.

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