Six Impossible Things

Six Impossible Things

You can find me in Korea.

Its like an Alice in Wonderland apple.

Its like an Alice in Wonderland apple.

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unepeach watercolor title

I am in love with the ease and clean up of this DIY project! You can take whatever you’d like to add a little shine to and “marbleize” it with some nail polish. The same nail polish you never get through before it turns into a gloppy mess! (Maybe that’s just my experience because I can’t stop buying it but rarely put it on.  Whoops.)

Just click on the pictures and follow the steps and you to can marvel in wonderment at your skills in water colors!

Water Color Marbleizing | DIY I am in love with the ease and clean up of this DIY project! You can take whatever you’d like to add a little shine to and “marbleize” it with some nail polish. Comments

unepeach kingsejong title

Last week we celebrated Hangeul Day in Korea. Hangeul is the written Korean language, the alphabet. It was created by a Joseon era king, King Sejong. He is rightly admired to this day as a king for the people, a renaissance man, and an all around decent guy.  So, to celebrate the upcoming day off of work, I visited the museum dedicated to telling his story.

To foreigners, creating Hangeul is probably what King Sejong is best known for. Before that time, Koreans used Chinese characters to write the Korean language. It didn’t always work and, of course, only the rich folks knew how to read it. Sejong realized that everyday people needed the opportunity to read and write so he created a phonetic language that made sense and was easy to teach. Thus, the creation of Hangeul.

Sejong, however, did many things to help his country. As much as royalty is a disgusting concept, you have to admire him, this was one guy who tried to do right by his countrymen and women. You can come to the museum and check out some of his other achievements and works.

Within the same museum is also a wing dedicated to Admiral Sunshin Yi, the hero of the Korean people and a man who pretty much saved the entire country from the onslaught of the Japanese.  The recent, wildly popular movie, The Admiral: Roaring Currents, has brought this Korean hero to the attention of the world. The Admiral is the story of Yi’s Battle of Myeongryang, in which he and his measly group of 12 ships, defeated the Japanese Navy’s 130 ships.  Yeah, its pretty unbelievable.

He has a fascinating life story as well, he wasn’t always a winner, he failed in his first attempts to get into the military and he was demoted more than once, but he is know living in infamy.  You can see all this in an awesome “drama” at the museum.

You can get museum times, location, and some bits of other information on their website:

King Sejong Story

The King Sejong Story Last week we celebrated Hangeul Day in Korea. Hangeul is the written Korean language, the alphabet. It was created by a Joseon era king, King Sejong. Comments

Bird Riders |A Review|

Bird Riders |A Review|

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I finally found an English site food delivery service that will come all the way out to poor little Gangnam. Now, the delivery charge is quite large, but when you don’t want to venture out to Itaewon or HBC but want it to come to you, then that’s the time to go ahead and pay it (and give a little tip this time). Because I called on a Saturday night around 6pm (I know, I’m cool) it took about an…

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Savory French Toast @ Unepeach 15

I’m not even joking, if a restaurant made this meal for me I’d happily shell out 20 bucks for it. (This is, of course, going by Western food prices in Korea.) This is one of the best brunch foods I’ve ever made and for good reason.

Most of the time if I go into the kitchen I don’t really have much of a plan. At times I use recipes and I adjust and change them to fit my needs, tastes and available ingredients pretty much at a whim.  But, today, I researched the best way to make a crispy on the outside, creamy on the inside French toast. I went to a bakery 15 minutes from my home because I knew they had for real rustic French bread. I thought about what vegetables would taste the best with the eggy bread. I thought about what type of “syrup” was needed. So, the bottom line is, thinking about things ahead of time really paid off here. It’s amazing and pretty much my own recipe.  Bragginess :D.

The toast is super crisp on the outside with the extra step of toasting the French toast in an oven. The balsamic reduction was not my first choice for a sauce.  I wanted to make an aeoli instead but I’m confused as to whether the eggs in Korea are pasteurized. I’m sure they are, but I couldn’t get confirmation yet and I’m always kind of a coward with raw eggs.  But the balsamic has a sweetness that worked perfectly PERFECTLY. I was so excited to shove it in my face.

Ingredients (for four pieces):

  • 1/2 a loaf of rustic French bread
  • 1/2 cup of vegetable stock
  • 1/2 a stick of butter plus more for frying
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 4-5 stalks of asparagus
  • 1-2 cups of mushrooms ( I used mini King Oyster)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of milk (I used soy)
  • salt + pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey mustard
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup

Directions:

  • In a large pan, bring 1/2 a cup of vegetable stock, 1/2 stick of butter and clove of garlic to a boil. Add your mushrooms and cook until they smell unbelievable and are nice and browned. Add your asparagus that have been cut in thirds. Cook 1-2 more minutes.  Don’t overcook your asparagus or…eww.   Add some salt + pepper. Remove from the pan and put to the side, get ride of the garlic.
  • In a shallow bowl, or pasta plate, add your eggs, milk, salt and pepper to taste and cumin. Whip it good.  Cut your bread into 1 inch slices.  In a (very) hot pan, add a slice of butter and let it melt. Dredge slices one at a time in the egg mix and add to the pan.  Cook until browned on both sides. Add all your toasts to a baking pan and bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. (Whyyyy? Why can’t I eat it RIGHT NOW! You may ask. You can totally eat the bread after the pan cooking. But, if you want your edges nice and crispy but your insides wonderfully creamy, go ahead and give it a nice toast. ) 
  • I had a bit of egg left over so I made a tiny omelette and topped the toast with it.  Totally optional.
  • In a small pan, add your balsamic vinegar, honey mustard and syrup. Cook on  a low heat until reduced to a nice, thickened, sticky, sweet sauce.
  • Add everything to a plate and drizzle with sauce.
  • Blow your mind!
Savory French Toast I’m not even joking, if a restaurant made this meal for me I’d happily shell out 20 bucks for it. Comments

hanbok detail 3

It was that time of year again. Time for the Chuseok celebrations and I’m a bit late to post my pictures but they’re just so damn cute. Who could resist?

At school, rather than concentrating on the traditional chores that Koreans must perform for the full moon festival, we focus on the fun they get to have. They got to wear their hanboks and they are too adorable for words. The students made a traditional rice cake called songpyeong, which are DELICIOUS. Besides ddeokbokki, its the only rice cake I like. They are actually sweet because of the filling, unlike other rice cakes. They played some games, they made a craft, they took maybe 2,000 pictures each.

Honestly, I don’t know how Korean kids can stand their parents taking their pictures. They literally have to pose near everything they come across at home and at school. My school makes money off professional pictures taken during these events so there is some pushy photographer at every step of the way bothering me and my students. It’s super obnoxious but its a kinda “can’t fight city hall” type of thing.  Believe me, I’ve complained.

Chuseok |2014| It was that time of year again. Time for the Chuseok celebrations and I’m a bit late to post my pictures but they’re just so damn cute. Comments

Chocolate Zucchini Cake 2

This recipe has a lot of zucchini in it, almost three full cups and it makes a soft, moist cake that even meatarians could enjoy.  I really REALLY wanted to make a luscious frosting for this cake but I already felt a bit guilty about the sugar I used and didn’t want to add more because it was supposed  to be a healthy alternative to the two ice cream cones I like to eat after dinner every night :/.

But, it could definitely withstand a decadent frosting and be amazing. So pick one of your favorite recipes and top it off!  Or you could go the powdered sugar route like me :).

Adapted from: Two Peas and Their Pod

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk or milk sub (I used soy.)
  • 3 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate, coated in flour

Directions:

  • Sift your flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • Cream your butter and sugar. Add in your eggs, vanilla and syrup and mix. Fold in your zucchini until well incorporated.  Fold in your dark chocolate.
  • Add your flour mixture to the zucchini mixture one cup at a time  with a little milk until well mixed.  If its too dry add a bit more milk or water.
  • Butter and flour your pan. I used one large cake pan or you can use two smaller pans to make a layered cake.  You could also make a sheet cake (9×13).
  • Bake at 325 Degrees for 40-45 minutes. Because I used a large cake pan, it took about 1 hour and 10 minutes. But a smaller pan will take less time.
Chocolate Zucchini Cake This recipe has a lot of zucchini in it, almost three full cups and it makes a soft, moist cake that even meatarians could enjoy.   Comments

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After a brief hiatus from updating the blog, I’m back with a food review because, well, they’re the easiest!  I’ve made it my personal mission to get out and explore something new this weekend but, as of now, I’m sat comfy in my bed watching old episodes of Black Books and drinking a heavy dose of coffee to get through writing this simple review :D.

I’ve already gone over my affinity for Mexican food in my review for Vatos Tacos. To sum up my Vatos experience: I was disappointed. When I asked for recommendations for other dishes at Vatos I was told to order mostly Korean Fusion Mexican food (like the kimchi fries…fries? At a Mexican place?  Meh.) .  I don’t mind fusion food at all, I cook it often in my own kitchen, but it had left me with no restaurant to call my own Mexican sanctuary.

Julio’s is in my neighborhood (sort of) and without realizing it when I planned to go there, it’s owned by the same person who owns Pier 17.  So, I visited both restaurants in the same weekend not knowing this fact. I am quite interested in the person who decided they wanted to bring both Cajun and Mexican food back to Korea. That person might just be a culinary angel.

Julio’s hit the spot.  The chips were proper Mexican style chips and the salsa was nice.  The guac tasted alright at first but then it hit you with some strange aftertaste…I’m assuming its whatever they used to keep it green. I would probably pass on it next time around.

I re-ordered the carnitas (slow cooked pork) tacos, which I found so disappointing at Vatos, and I am happy to announce that Julio’s were moist and seasoned well.  They came with a flour tortilla which I prefer over a corn tortilla. I probably could have ordered more of them and ate all four on my own.

We ordered the chicken enchiladas as well. I’m not a huge enchiladas fan, honestly, its not a very “fresh” tasting dish…and while the sauce tasted alright I’m pretty sure its from a can.  However, I must give respect to the fact that it came with actual refried beans and chips to sop up the sauce. That’s something you don’t see much of in Korea and came across as much more traditional of a plate. It was a measly amount of beans but I was so excited to see them!

The quesadilla was standard but they do give you a nice side plate of accouterments : tomatoes, lettuce, onions, guacamole, and crema fresca.  I have one thing to complain about this dish though and I think I’m entitled. The small red sauce next to that quesadilla is MARINARA sauce, which I do not understand when they have a very nice salsa to serve with it.  Marinara sauce. Gross.

While there are always little gripes with me, overall I really enjoyed the meal. It tasted much more like what I can get back home, you get more for your money than at Vatos and its walking distance. Until I find a better spot, this will be my Mexican sanctuary.

JULIO’s  Locations in Gangnam, Hongdae, and Jongno                                                                                                    Directions in Gangnam: Exit 11 of Gangnam Station – go straight along the main road then take a right up the hill just before the CGV cinema.

NOTE: on this road you can also find Double Trouble and Brick Oven Pizza ! You’re welcome!

After a brief hiatus from updating the blog, I’m back with a food review because, well,… After a brief hiatus from updating the blog, I’m back with a food review because, well, they’re the easiest!   Comments

Japanese Maple by Clive James

Japanese Maple by Clive James

japanese-maple1

Your death, near now, is of an easy sort.                                                                                                                                                  So slow a fading out brings no real pain.                                                                                                                                       Breath growing short                …

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