Never been to Korea. I get around, I’ve been all over Asia, a good bit of South America, Europe, and even one country in Africa. But never to Korea. Not for lack of desire, though. Wouldn’t I just like a trip to Seoul? But long ago I had a few lessons in Korean cooking from a neighbor and I like Asian cuisine including Korean. I take guests to a Korean restaurant in the town where my office is located, mainly because it isn’t a chain and it is very easy to please most people with their menu. It’s not full-on Korean but it’s good.
There are several outstanding Korean vloggers on cooking. I’m not talking mukbang here (where people watch someone videoing themselves as they eat a massive meal. I’m not totally getting that. But it can be diverting. How do they eat all that? And not look gross. And keep talking while eating? And why? One theory is that lone eaters, such as myself, who mostly has meals alone, find it companionable. Maybe) Nor is it ASMR, where the sound of crunching gives people a tingly feeling. No, these are cooks who demonstrate how to make local cuisine with an authentic taste, as long as an Asian grocery or H-Mart is somewhere nearby. We have a Korean grocery around the corner from my office and I work in a sort of rural area, so it’s surprising we even have it.
My latest find is a gal named Seonkyoung Longest who is married to an American guy named Jacob and they have a passion for Korean food, especially street food. Seonkyoung hams it up while she recreates her favorite street dishes like “Army Stew” (noodles and hotdogs, and spam and whatnot in a spicy broth), fried shrimp complete with heads and Korean breakfast toast-u (toasted egg and ham sandwiches.) Her recipe is without blame but I simplified it because I don’t particularly want ham and cheese. I’ll post a photo when I get around to it,
Joanna’s Take on Toast-u
2 slices toasting bread (it’s usually white, sorry) per person
1 egg per person
1/4 cup coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage & carrot) or do your own (better, by far but I was lazy and using up an entire cabbage is a long affair here.) per serving
Wedge of regular yellow onion, sliced thinly
salt to taste
Brown sugar (I use raw sugar)
Kewpie Mayonnaise (Japanese in a squeeze bottle, you can sub American mayo)
Butter the bread lightly on both sides and toast in a dry non stick pan (like you do for grilled cheese.)
Mix the egg and slaw and onion. Season. Fry in the non stick pan (I add a drop of sesame oil for flavor.)
Turn the patty, fry other side. Cutting it in half it you are doing two is helpful and you need two pieces if doing two eggs.
Top toast with egg patty, sprinkle brown sugar on lightly, swirl on ketchup and mayo, top with other toast, cut in half. Eat.
If you use light spray of oil instead of butter on the bread and if you go lightly on the mayo, it’s a pretty reasonable breakfast compared to 2-eggs-toast because you are using one egg and adding veg. You wouldn’t think cabbage would taste great, but wow, does it ever taste good in an egg pancake.
Seonkyoung’s version has ham and American cheese and would please a guy who like breakfast meat or a more substantial sammidge. Go look at her videos. She’s terrific and a very enthusiastic cook. For another Korean video chef, try Maangchi. She’s the “Korean Julia Child” and lives in NYC. She is very accomplished at what she does and I find her explanations useful. She’s fun, too.