Posted in Recipes

A recipe for Kimchi Soup (Kimchi-guk)

A bowl of Kimchi Soup

Today, I am using some of my homemade Kimchi as part of a simple, but very tasty, recipe for Kimchi Soup.

Many people may think of Kimchi as a simply a cold side-dish, or a Banchan (when included as part of a Korean meal). However, it is often used as a cooking ingredient as well. Most notably, it can be added to fried rice, it is used as a primary ingredient in particular types of Korean stews known as Kimchi-jjigae, and  is also used  in a class of soups collectively called Kimchi-guk.

As with any ‘traditional’ soup, there are as many recipes as there are cooks and, today, I didn’t have in mind any particular Korean recipe, rather, I have simply created a fairly straightforward Pork and onion soup to which I add a good, healthy dollop of Kimchi to give it a sour and spicy finish…

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How to make Dongpo Pork – 東坡肉

Dongpo Pork  served with baby Bok Choy

Dong Po Pork is named after the Chinese poet Su Dongpo, who, by all accounts, loved pork belly prepared this way. The dish is an example of the Chinese technique of ‘red-cooking’ (紅燒), meaning that the main ingredients are braised in a a soy sauce based cooking medium.

Here, aromatics and sugar are added for sweetness and the slow-cooking of the fatty pork belly makes for a result that is rich, unctuous, and absolutely delicious.


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A Recipe for Chrysanthemum Chicken

A dish of Chrysanthemum Chicken

You can find many a recipe for ‘Chrysanthemum Chicken’ which actually contain either Chrysanthemum greens or petals as an ingredient, but our recipe here today differs from all of these and uses ‘Chrysanthemum’ only in the name.

In one of my oldest Chinese cookery books (long lost now, and long out of print), there is a recipe for ‘Chrysanthemum Chicken’ which supposedly was given the name simply because the finished dish resembles a large Chrysanthemum head. Personally, I think any supposed likeness involves a fair degree of poetic license, but the recipe in that old book produced a very nice result and I have re-created here as best I could from memory…


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Tiger Peppers (hu pi jian jiao – 虎皮尖椒)

Tiger Peppers 1

Tiger Peppers, or so 虎皮尖椒 (hu pi jian jiao) are so named because of the characteristic patterns that form on chillies when seared at very high, giving them a ‘tiger skin’ like appearance. Personally, I actually think that ‘Leopard Skin’ might be closer but I won’t quibble.

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Spicy Grilled Corn on the Cob

Spicy Grilled Corn on the Cob

Spicy grilled corn-on-the-cob will be something of a revelation to those who are only accustomed to corn being boiled and served with butter and salt. Freshly shucked corn is actually grilled and made spicy all around the world, of course, but today’s recipe has its roots in South-East Asia.

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How to make Agedashi Tofu

How to make this Agedashi Tofu

Agedashi Tofu is basically tofu that is first lightly deep-fried, and then served in a dashi based broth.

In Japanese cuisine, an agemono dish is any dish in which the main ingredient is deep-fried, while ‘age tofu’ would simply mean any preparation of deep-fried tofu. In agedashi tofu, the dashi can be any form of the basic Japanese cooking stock (plain seaweed, mushroom, or seaweed and bonito), but usually the chosen dashi is extended with other ingredients including soy sauce. Much of the time, a ‘noodle-soup’ type broth, or ‘Kakejiru’ is used.

Her is how to make Agedashi Tofu using a prepared Kakejiru…

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