From aromatic hot pots to piquant kimchi (pickled cabbage) to classic bibim bap (rice bowls), Korean cuisine's exhilarating harmony of robust flavors, colors, and textures spices up any meal. And though Korean is an increasingly popular dining-out option, few people venture to explore the peninsula's rich culinary arts at home. In Eating Korean, Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee invites us into her family kitchen to reveal the secretsand the surprising simplicityof the "other" Asian cuisine.
This warm, evocative celebration of Korean food features more than 100 authentic recipes alongside fascinating historical morsels and personal remembrances. Lee's passion for the foods of her native land is rendered vividly in reminiscencesof early morning mountain hikes followed by soothing chicken soup with rice, or the cozy hum of activity in her mother's kitchen before a celebrationthat bring Korean cuisine richly to life.
These enchanting narratives are the perfect prelude to the dishes themselves: the fragrant medley of Seafood Hot Pot, the intensely spiced Fire Meat, the scrumptious nuttiness of Sweet Spiced Rice, and a host of others. The dishes here cover all parts of the Korean menurice specialties; soups and hot pots; seafood, meat, and poultry dishes; desserts and snacks; side dishes; and more.
Eating Korean reveals how delightfully easy Korean dishes can be to prepare at home. Many hot pots and soups, for instance, can be on the table in less than half an hour of cooking time. Spicy, flavor-rich marinades, made with just a handful of ingredients, offer deliciously simple alternatives for barbecuing chicken, beef, and ribs. Quick, trouble-free preparations make the dishes in these pages ideal for any meal, from family dinner to holiday feast. The fact that Korean ranks among the world's healthiest cuisines makes it even more enticingand not just for special occasions.
Lee also offers illuminating insight into Korean eating traditionsetiquette, essential foods, and key ingredients. A full chapter is devoted to the customs and foods of holidays and celebrations, including New Year, Harvest Festival, birthdays, and weddings. The book's 65 photographs and illustrationsof Korea's food markets and countryside, its bountiful tables and traditional celebrationsround out this captivating portrait.
In its beguiling presentation of a cuisine and culture that are at once wonderfully exotic and remarkably accessible, Eating Korean inspires us to explore the eye-catching, mouthwatering delights of the Korean table in our own kitchens.