Monthly Archives: November 2010

Han Woo – “Real” Korean BBQ!

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Han Woo is a local, native cattle/cow, it has a slightly lighter color than regular brown cattle. In South Korea, Han Woo is very expensive as there’s not so many of them but Han Woo is one of the most delicious beef in the whole world, in my opinion. Han Woo beef also boasts the lowest cholesterol levels in beef in the world and also has, believe it or not, plenty of Omega 3 fats, that is unbelievably good beef. The Han Woo, compared to some beef in the U.S., is much more smooth and tasty. Of course, you can only get Han Woo in Korea, they don’t export it. In South Korea, most people eat either Australian imported beef or the Han Woo. Australian beef isn’t bad either but it’s certainly not a fresh as Han Woo. In my recent trip to Korea, I had the pleasure of eating Han Woo, it is indeed very good. If you are steak-addict like me, you will certainly make sure to eat some Han Woo, “the real Korean BBQ” they call it, in Korea. Also, most Korean BBQ restaurants will use “real”, fresh charcoal, not some kind of gas like here in … Continue reading

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Korean Street Food!

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(An array of different Korean hot dogs, can you spot the french fries dog?  That’s just the tip of the iceburg.) One of the best things about South Korea is that they have street food everywhere, I mean “everywhere”.  Literally on every other block, you will see a bunch of street food trucks, tents, etc…etc… (Dukpogi (떡복기) shown above) There’s also many, many different types of street food.  Probably the most popular street food is the Dukpogi.  “Duk” means rice cake, “pogi” means mixed.  Together, it means spicy mixed rice cake in thick Korean chili sauce.   Also, many street food retailers will put some fish cake with the Dukpogi, which tastes very good as well. You can learn to make this Dukpogi at home but it won’t taste the same as if you eat it in the streets of Korea. Also, another popular street food is the Mandu(만두) or dumplings in English.  When you are hungry and you see this Mandu, you cannot resist eating it.  Besides, it’s cheap, make a dollar or two for a small serving. I used to work in Korea for a year couple years back.  At least one day out of the week, I … Continue reading

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My Favorite Korean Food – Live Octopus

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Probably the single thing I miss about Korea the most is the live octopus.  This is my favorite food of all time, I grew up eating live octopus when I was young and it’s really great with soju. When I arrived in Korea, my mom asked me what I wanted to eat, I said, “Sannakji” (산낙지), which means live octopus. Let me clear up some of the mis-understandings and rumors here.  Koreans don’t actually eat “live” octopus.  The head of the octopus has been cut beforehand and the tentacles naturally move but it’s not actually “live”. We don’t know why what the tentacles still “function”, but that’s why I love live octopus, it sticks on your tongue.  Just make sure you chew all the way before swallowing otherwise you can choke to death as it happens in Korea to several every year. And you want to eat live octopus “fresh”, preferably at a live octopus specialty restaurants.  In Korea, there’s live octopus restaurants that specialize in that and that only.  Also, you can get live octopus at fish markets, which are super fresh, I will have a blog post on that too later. I know PETA has been posting bunch … Continue reading

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Arriving In Korea, Incheon Airport

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On November 12th 2010, I was sitting in my apartment kitchen here in San Francisco.  All of the sudden, I wanted to go to Korea, where I grew up until I was 9 years old.  Like they say in San Francisco that you left your heart in San Francisco, I must have left my heart in Korea. Anyways, like 3AM in the morning on the 12th, I bought a ticket on Expedia from SFO to Incheon (Seoul), Korea that left around 12PM.   I didn’t get much sleep and barely made it to the airport. Somehow, I was able to get in touch with my mom who lives in Korea, and she came to the airport to pick me up. Upon arrival, I guess I missed Korea very much, it’s a wonderful feeling when you can be somewhere where they speak your own language, drive Korean cars, and practically everything is Korean. So, this is me in my mom’s car, us leaving the Incheon airport.  You see, the international airport for Seoul, Korea used to be in Seoul but they built a new airport about 15 years ago in Incheon, so you have to drive about an hour before you … Continue reading

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