Homesick for Korea: Seoul food satisfies


We loved living in Seoul: the people, their energy, the color, the humor, the passion, and the food!  Here's a little taste…

Nobiani:  Korean Barbeque


 ¼ C soy sauce

3-5 crushed cloves garlic

 2 T sugar

2 t sesame oil

2 T minced scallion

¼ t cayenne

2 T stock or water

1 T pear juice or sherry

1 T ground sesame seed


Marinate 400 g thinly-sliced meat or cubes of tofu


Shred: 1 daikon radish

Sprinkle with salt; let drain 15 minutes; squeeze out liquid.


Broil, bake or grill with marinade and diakon radish.  

Serve with rice, large lettuce and fresh mulberry leaves, and as many kimchis as possible.

How many wonderful meals did I have on behalf of the generosity of Korean friends?  So many women have taken me to their favorite restaurants and introduced me to their favorite foods.  Especially memorable are the times when they have walked me through the preparations in their own kitchens.


But EVERY time, when we sit down to eat, everyone at the table stops to wait for the foreigner to begin.  All eyes are upon me, until the sigh of pleasure and the question, “how did you learn to eat with chopsticks just like a Korean?”  My answer, “because I got hungry”, gives them a momentary pause, as I raise one hand with pinching chopsticks and the other empty and grasping.  Hunger is a great teacher.  It's communion at the table no matter how you slice it.

Oi Namul:  Korean Cucumber Salad

Slice: 400-500 g cucumber

Sprinkle with: 1 t salt

Let stand for 30 minutes. Rinse; squeeze out water.  

Toss cucumbers with:

      1 crushed clove garlic

      ¼ t cayenne

     1 t ground sesame seed

     dash pepper

     1 t sesame oil




the Garlic Market at Karak-dong
the Garlic Market at Karak-dong

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