how to make handmade noodle soup -kalguksu-칼국수

how to make handmade noodle soup -kalguksu-칼국수

Another exciting class at Korean Tourism in Singapore last Friday! I was very ambitious and decided to prepare some dough for my students to hand cut noodles. We are making kal-guk-su(칼국수 – handmade noodle soup).

 

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Guess what happened when I took them to the class?

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rolling the dough

 

All stuck together!!! 🙁

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We didn’t have any rolling pins so we were creative with our noodles and it was so much fun~

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At the end of the class, we had delicious noodle soup and everyone was happy!! handmade Korean noodle soup1

 

handmade Korean noodle soup2

 

handmade Korean noodle soup4

Korean handmade noodle soup
boiling…. waiting…

 

Korean handmade noodle soup
Finally!

 

This is actually one of my favourite dish to eat in Korea. Check out my previous post on kalguksu

Happy cooking everyone!

 

Korean Tourism classes

Korean Tourism classes

Oh my, time really flys… It’s been too long since my last post.  Here are some class photos from Korean Tourism Singapore. I promise to be back sooner next time!

  • Japche (잡채) class in February

 

Our creation in the class
Our creation in the class

 

Great to see a male student in the class for a change
Great to see a male student in the class for a change

 

Very happy students

 

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  • Last year’s Pollak soup class
I think they are twins! 🙂

 

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Besides Korean cooking, I love baking…. My mother in law and I took a 3 day basic French Pastry course a few months ago. Oh my goodness…. I was in heaven!

Pastry class
I am in heaven!

 

Recent articles on Epoch Times

Recent articles on Epoch Times

We had a stream of friends visiting in Bangkok. April and May must be the traveling season.  Could this be my excuse for not writing as often as I should??? As I promised, my recipe on Korean chilli squid  and more garden update should be on the way.

In the mean while, Here are some of the articles which were featured in Epoch Times last few months.

 

 

 

 

February article (click here)

Feb Article_Epoch Times

 

 

 

March article (click here)

March article_Epoch Times

 

April article (page 1-click here) (page 2-click here)

April Article 1_Epoch Times

 

April Article 2_Epoch Times

 

 

 

 

 

 

February & March Korean Cooking Classes

February & March Korean Cooking Classes

The last two months I’ve had great fun teaching at the Korean Tourism Organisation in Singapore. Here are some snap shots of the classes and a link to the recipe.

 

One of the February classes was a lesson in cooking a black bean rice dish called Jjajangbap.   Check out the recipe!

 

 

  • Happy students!! These are some of my regular students….

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  •  Everyone looks so serious, don’t they? They needed to concentrate so they didn’t burn the sauce!

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  • But the results was worth it…

Jja jang bap

 

 

 

One of the March classes was making Hodduck (Cinnamon sugar pancakes). This class always brings lots of smile while we are cooking!

 

  • This group  made the perfect shaped hodduk!

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student 4

 

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  • Melted sugar and cinnamon in the pancake is just scrumptious!

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I will be back in Singapore in May for more classes. Please contact Korean Tourism  on +65-6533-0441 to register for your spot -its FREE to attend!

As for classes in Bangkok, I am hoping to have the first class at end of April. Contact me for if you are interested in attending – spots will be limited!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

February Bangkok Farmers Market

February Bangkok Farmers Market

Yes, I finally started back at Bangkok Farmers Market in February. Unfortunately, my husband was away to help with the heavy lifting so it was hard work and I ended up with a minor back injury!!  Thank goodness for my friends who came to help out over the weekend and those that visited my stall. I don’t know what I would do without them…Hope my husband is reading this!! hint hint!!

Back in Sydney, I used to make necklaces and sell them at a market in Mosman. It was never about selling though, it was all about catching up with friends, eating and shopping. Except for the Thailand heat, it feels almost like that here at Bangkok Farmers market. Ah, the good old days…!

Busy packing before the market.

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I had a new item to sell at the February market and it was really exciting to hear all the great feedback! My new “Green papaya” kimchi! It’s a mix of the crunchiness of green papaya together with Kimchi sauce! A great combination!!

 

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My organic kimchi!

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My bibimbap stand which comes with organic brown rice! Very healthy…

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Making hodduk(cinnamon pancake) – a lot of people are often surprised to know that this is a popular Korean street snack food!

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The cooking classes are getting a lot of interest, especially Kimchi making class. I love meeting people who have the same passion as I do about cooking or are just curious about Korean food. I’ll be starting regular monthly classes soon so get in early to avoid disappointment!

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I will be back at the March Bangkok Farmer market (15th & 29th). If I have time, I will take my friends suggestion and try making green mango kimchi as well this time. That should be an interesting flavor mix. Be sure to come and visit if you are in Bangkok!

 

 

 

 

Gujung celebration

Gujung celebration

Hope everyone had a fantastic Chinese New Year celebration!

This year, I threw a big dinner party introducing  Gujung (Korean New Year) to friends  in Bangkok. I wasn’t sure what their reaction would be serving rice cake soup (dduk guk-click for the recipe) but most people seemed to enjoy it.

Here are some of the photos from the Gujung night…

 

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I have never made this much ddukguk in my life!!

ddukguk

 

Some of the essential dishes for Gujung!

  • Fried fish

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  • Fried Zucchinis

zucchinis

 

  • Japche

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If you want to read more about Korean Gujung, check out the The Epoch Times Newspaper.  I am a regular contributor now.  It’s fun writing about Korean food and culture. Check out my first article, my best friend’s daughter’s my cute model here!

January article (click the link to open the file)

 

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Happy New Year

Happy New Year

Happy New Year everyone!

It’s already half way through January and I guess everyone has either kick started strong with the new year resolutions or is still struggling with hangover from NYE. My husband and I had a great Christmas in Sydney with the family and then zipped back to spend New Year in Bangkok.

xmas in Sydney

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xmas feast-Salmon

After gaining a few kilos over the festive season, we have decided to do a complete detox following Martha Steward’s website. We went through this relatively easy last year so we thought why not!  Well, this time was I wrong… Just cooking and eating vegetable for someone who loves preparing different dishes is painful!! I kicked and moaned and threatened my husband that I was going to quit but here I am in week three of the detox and now starting to enjoy it a lot more as we can eat  fish, grains and beans now.  Hallelujah!

detox

Anyway, enough of my detox. After spending 4 weeks in Sydney, most of my babies in the balcony, especially tomatoes, have dried up but I was happy to see the parsley, basil and mint are still going strong.

The weather is very cool(almost cold!) 23°C in the Bangkok mornings at the moment so it’s an ideal temperature to plant seeds. So here we go…. I have planted Italian zucchini, cucumbers, rockmelon, a few variety of tomatoes, eggplants and lettuce.

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  • Heirloom Rockmelons

rockmelon

  • Japanese cucumbers sent by my reader from Singapore (Thank you!)

Japanese cucumber seedling

  • Italian zucchinis seed that I bought from my last trip to Italy

Italian zuchinni

The second project is to start growing micro plants. I hope to harvest these within 7 days and add them to my salads. After day 6 though, there’s not much happening. Perhaps the seeds are too old or kitchen paper towel as a base was not a good idea.

seeds

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As far as cooking classes are concerned, I am back teaching at Korean Tourism in Singapore from February. Classes will be on 14th and 17th February and I will be teaching Jjapjang bap and pollack soup. If you would like to register for the class, please contact Korean Tourism direct (+65 65330441).

I hope everyone has a very exciting 2014 and Happy New Year once again!

 

 

 

 

 

My not so recent trip to Seoul update

My not so recent trip to Seoul update

I wonder how the year has passed by right in front of my eyes so quickly. 2013 has been filled with mostly happy memories. My husband and I celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary, 10 years since we first met and our first complete year in Bangkok. I am still traveling back to Singapore whenever I can to conduct group classes and private events. Hopefully, there are  lots of interesting adventures in store for us 2014.

 

A late update of my not so recent trip to Seoul….

If you are planning a trip to Korea, I think Autumn is the best time to travel. I was almost shocked  at how clear the sky was and how refreshing the air was.  You could mistake this picture with a postcard. No photoshop, a quick snap of Seoul with my iphone from the subway.

 

view from the train

 

I like trying new dishes whenever I visit Seoul. Italian cuisine is the latest trend in Korea. It’s not quite my scene as I always look forward to authentic Korean food whenever I am there. Oh well, I can’t try Italian food in Korea, can I, so I resisted and stuck to me beloved Korean food!!

First stop, Gwangjang market for some authentic street food! This time I thought I will be a little more adventurous…

I have tried Chicken feet before and the sight of it has never convinced me to try it again but these ones at the market were rather delicious – especially washed down with a nice cold rice wine.

chicken feet

 

rice wine

 

Pork three ways – Pork belly, blood sausage and pigs ear. We used to feed  dried pig’s ear to our pet dog, but now it is a delicacy! How can I describe it… chewy??  At least I can proudly say I have tried them for the first time.

 

Pork three ways

 

Next, freshly made mung bean pancake.  There were so many stalls cooking mung bean pancakes but they all seemed to be deep frying. We finally found one that used a fry pan. Between three people, we could barely finish half of the pancake. Doggy bag!  The chilli rice cake thought was a little disappointing and quite tasteless… I think I can make this better!!

 

mung bean pancake

 

chilli rice cake

 

On the second last day of my trip to Seoul, one of my relatives invited me to a neighbourhood restaurant that specialises in oysters. I have always considered oysters as potentially dangerous if you don’t eat them fresh. I have had friends get very ill eating oysters in Asia, so I normally only eat them when I go back to Australia.

Apparently oysters are in season from October in Korea. This particular restaurant specialises in Octopus most of the year but from October they only sell oysters.

To start with we had oysters steamed…  After it was steamed for 15 minute or so, we were given gloves and knives to shuck our own oysters. Each oyster was as big as my hand and so sweet!

oysters steamed 1

 

In addition to the steamed oysters, we had a big plate of fresh oysters to wrap with pork belly. I was speechless. It was just amazing. The saltiness of oysters married with boiled pork belly wrapped with chilli radish in Chinese cabbage leaves was just heavenly.

 

oysters2

 

To finish off, we had oyster pancake. I was so full already but I was on a mission to stuff down as much as I can. I wasn’t sure when I was going to have this much oysters in one go again!! What was most surprising was the total bill  was only S$100 including alcohol. What a bargain!!

 

For my last night in Seoul, my parents decided to pamper me with my favourite food which is also in season.  Crabs!! My parents bought live crabs from the seafood market and steamed them straight away for dinner!  Can you tell which ones are male and female crabs? Females have lots of eggs but less meat and male crabs are very meaty.

crab steamed

 

The two top ones are females and the bottom one is male. Can you see the difference in shape of their tummy? Female ones have inverted U shape and males ones are shaped like a tip of a rocket.

 

Dinner time!!

dinner

 

 

When you open the female crab, you get the orange eggs and it’s juice. I prefer female crabs so I can mix the eggs with steamed rice! I wouldn’t indulge too often, they are high in cholesterol.

 

female crab

 

We just demolished them….

empty shells

 

I have so many photos and stories to share about this trip but it will have to wait until 2014. We are back in Sydney visiting family and friends and enjoying beautiful Sydney. It’s been a while since we had our Christmas back home, I am ready for Christmas ham and Christmas cake cooked by someone else!

Have a fantastic Christmas and see you all back in New Year!

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Korean Restaurant Review: Ja Gum Sung Bangkok

Korean Restaurant Review: Ja Gum Sung Bangkok

I am slowly making my way through all the Korean restaurants here in Bangkok. There are lots of Korean restaurants gathered around Korea Plaza (between Sukumvit Soi 10 & 12). It’s not the most authentic “little Korea” I have found, but it will have to do for now.

We went to a Korean Chinese restaurant called Ja Gum Sung (자금성). Korean Chinese restaurants are famous for two dishes – Black bean noodles(jja jang myun-짜장면) and Spicy seafood noodle soup (jjambong-짬뽕). I knew it would be hard to beat my favourite Korean restaurant in Singapore(Dong Bang Hong), but worth a try.

 We ordered seafood Jja jang myun . The sauce mainly consists of pork, seafood, and onions( and of course the black bean sauce).

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The second dish  was the Seafood Jjambong. This was super spicy! Apparently, I found out later you can ask for less  spice (phet nit noi – my broken Thai).

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The side dishes were pretty good. My husband commented how sweet the kimchi is. Personally, I prefer it to be a bit more spicy and salty 🙂

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My husband I are usually order the above two dishes and share but here you can order half and half. It’s called Jjam Jja myun! I might have to try this one next time. (circled in the menu)

jjam jja myun

 

For those of you that want to try, here is the business card.

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The entrance looks like this. It can be a bit hard to find.

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I visited Sunday around 6pm and it was full  of Koreans which is a good sign, but we were lucky to get the last table. I recommend booking  a table in advance. They do deliveries as well.

Korean food at Bangkok Farmers Market

Korean food at Bangkok Farmers Market

We finally did it. Two days of pure excitement, fun and most of all, hearing all the great comments from the customers who came to visit my stall. It made me forget how tired I was. Without my friends, this wouldn’t have happened(you know who you are – thanks you!!) and also to my husband for his encouragement.  Thank you all lovely people!

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If you were wondering what I was cooking and selling, here is our menu.

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First, Hot Cinnamon Pancake (aka. Hodduk). I must have tested this recipe 10 times until I was finally satisfied. My aunt in Los Angeles has a shop selling hodduk and she shared her secret recipe. I thought mine was actually better though. We also played around with fillings including jam and nutella  to see if we could sell other flavours. In the end we stayed with the traditional sugar and cinnamon filling. It was a great success!

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Next, Organic Kimchi – this was my best seller. I have never had  much success with Kimchi in Singapore but I found using fresh organic cabbage  in Bangkok made so much difference. Check out the labels that my creative friend designed!!  I sold out the whole batch I made on the first day of the market and stayed up all night making more for the next day.

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Seafood pancake and bibimbap.

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My dear friends who helped out both on Saturday and Sunday. Once again, thank you!!!

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sandra and Nicky

 

Enough about my stall, let me share some photos of the rest of the market. There were interesting and fun activities throughout the two days and even a live band to keep us bouncing.

 

My favourite bread stall – Urban Pantry, fantastic sourdough breads.

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Organic veggies!! I love these baby carrots. Check out the colours of the lettuce…

veggies

 

lettuce

 

 

I finally feel like I am being part of the community in Bangkok. I met some really interesting people who are working towards building a great community  here and I am proud to say that I am a part of it. Until next time….

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