A lot of the recipes I choose to post are born from seeing another recipe and adapting it to what I have on hand. Sometimes I like to go to the farmers market without any real idea of what I am going to make and then just come home and throw something together. Sometimes, I purchase a random ingredient and hope I have things to make it into something amazing. Once in a very random while, I will go all out to create something I have never done before with ingredients I have never used before. A few weeks ago I saw a series of posts on Closet Cooking that suddenly had me craving Korean barbecue. One of the main things that has turned me off from making this at home is that I never seem to have all of the ingredients. However last Saturday, I decided to change that. I took a little field trip to Koreatown to pick up a few ingredients that were missing from my kitchen. I had a great time at the store pondering ingredients I couldn't recognize and hoping that they would somehow magically come together into something I would want to consume.
(I made out with just a *few* things)
I didn't really realize what I had gotten myself into until I started cooking, but once I got started I couldn't stop. When I was done five hours later, I realized I had made something incredible and something I did not want to stop eating.
For me, the secret ingredient was the gochujang which is a fermented hot pepper paste. I did about five laps in the market before I discovered row after row of gochujang hidden behind the fresh produce. There were so many varieties, I picked what worked best for my wallet and resusable bag. This recipe was so good! There was smoke, tang, bite, and crunch in every bite. I'm looking forward to sharing all the recipes I used to make it happen over the next few days and a huge special thanks to Lauren of Harb Knock Life for suggesting California Market which is officially my new favorite store in town!
450 S. Western Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90020
Korean BBQ Chicken (Dak Buglgogi)
(From Closet Cooking)
Makes 4 servings
1 pound chicken breast, thinly sliced
1/2 cup gochujang
5 cloves garlic, grated
1 inch-piece ginger, grated
1 small onion, grated
1 Asian pear (grated)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 green onions, chopped
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, crushed
Mix everything in a large bowl and marinate for at least an hour.
Cook the meat on a barbecue or in a pan on the stove.
Tip: Place the chicken breasts in the freezer for an hour or two to stiffen them up a bit and they will be much easier to slice thinly.