Tuesday, November 23, 2010

What to do with leftover eggwash?

Whenever I made something breaded that requires an egg wash, I always end up either tossing the extra beaten egg immediately, or put it in the fridge but toss it later anyway because I forget it's there and it goes bad.

Now, though, I know exactly what to do.

The other day I was making breaded chicken cutlets to go with pasta for lunch, and it dawned on me:
Why not just mix the leftover beaten egg in with the hot pasta in the pan, Carbonara-style?

So I did (being careful to cook the egg, stirring constantly, so, not exactly Carbonara...) and the results were really tasty: the egg coated each strand and gave it a silky texture.

The pasta sauce itself was a riff on a green olive pantry sauce that I've been making a lot lately (taking advantage of my huge jars of pimento-stuffed green olives from Costco): chopped green olives, minced garlic, minced green hot peppers (고추) and lots of freshly ground black pepper.

All those times I squandered that extra egg...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Restaurant 유라시아 (Eurasia): Russian Food in Edae

Typically, when M. and I want to eat Russian food here in Seoul, "Edae" is not really a place that springs to mind (we usually go to Caravan in Dongdaemun). Therefore, I was a bit surprised when my friend T. called me up last Saturday and suggested we join him and some friends for Russian food...in Edae. I wondered where it was, exactly, and how the food compared to what we were used to getting in Dongdaemun.

Turns out that the place, Restaurant Eurasia, is right across the street from Sinchon Station and the Megabox, on the 4th floor of the 뉴포트빌딩 ("Newport Building").

The food itself was pretty inexpensive: Each dish we ordered cost between 6,000-8,000 won, and the portions were pretty generous. I ordered the golubsy, and M. ordered these meat patties whose name I have embarrassingly forgotten. For appetizers/things to share with the table, we got an order of vinagrette (beet salad) and lamb pelmeni (dumplings) in broth. One of T's friends ordered a layered herring salad that came out with a pretty latticework of pink mayonnaise:

 Herring salad
 Lamb pelmeni
 Golubtsy (cabbage rolls)
 Meat patties with mashed potatoes and dipping sauce

While the cabbage rolls were comforting and just the ticket for my hangover (thanks to Bar Da and its Manhattans the previous night), the flavor wasn't too distinctive. The potatoes that came with M's meal were either instant or overseasoned with broth (the texture made me think it was the former), and the patties themselves were kind of fatty. The lamb pelmeni was probably my favorite: well-stuffed and not overly seasoned, and the wrappers weren't overcooked. I also enjoyed the roasted pepper dipping sauce that came with the lamb shashlik (kabob/고치) and the meat patties, and the vinagrette with its chunks of dill pickle.
However, though the portions, prices, and proximity might cause me to return, the atmosphere, with its decently loud dance music, huge booths and glaring white furniture lit by eerie blue lights, was a bit jarring and not exactly conducive to dinnertime conversation. Our server forgot to bring out one entree and we had to ask for it again. Also, I was not a fan of the slippery square white plates with upturned edges, which looked nice enough and I'm sure work great for sushi or other finger foods, but are less suited for eating food with a knife and fork (my utensils kept slipping off the edge and clattering onto my lap; maybe I should just chalk that up to my general clumsiness though...).

After dinner we wandered through Edae browsing the various stalls and finally decided to go for waffles (2,000 won each). T. and I got green tea ones filled with cream and jam, and M. ordered a frozen yoghurt-stuffed one.  Yum.

Restaurant Eurasia:
Line 2, Ewha station exit 2
"뉴포트빌딩" 4F
(02) 393-7011

Waffles: "와플공장" in Edae...not sure how to get there, exactly...

JT in Hongdae

A few weeks ago, we went to see 'The Social Network.' While the movie itself was kind of hit-or-miss, my husband and I agreed that Justin Timberlake's portrayal of Shawn Parker, the founder of Napster (casting irony) was a highlight.

Then the other night on our way to Bar Da in Hongdae, I saw this:

 Wonder if the burgers are delicious, like JT says they are...?

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Why did my husband send me this link?

Which got me here?

Holy Land Deli! Now I'm really homesick...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Serendipitous Black Tofu & Bo Ssam with Seoul Eats at 오수 (Osu)

Yesterday afternoon, in the midst of an epic and cathartic trans-continental G-chat with an old friend, I decided to take up Seoul Eats on his offer (via mailing list) of dinner in Insadong. I've been meaning to get in touch with him for quite some time regarding the cooking classes at O'ngo Food Communications, but scheduling and studying and etcetera have conspired against me up until this point.

So last night, we met up at his cooking school where I met another new friend and we enjoyed some coffee (real coffee!) and a food-centric chat before heading off to the restaurant.

Before getting to the restaurant, we had to make a detour because Dan had gotten cheated out of a 야채진빵(yachae jin ppang/vegetable steamed bun), at a nearby 만두 (mandu) shop the day before (I forgot to take a picture of the sign, so the name escapes me...). Instead of a savory meat-and-veggie bun, he received a red bean one. As someone with a salt tooth who is frequently disappointed by the overwhelming number of sweet foods disguised as savory here (case in point: garlic bread at Paris Baguette), I could appreciate his frustration. However, all three of us benefited from the oversight: The fluffy bun was stuffed full of ground pork and sweet cabbage and my favorite, short lengths of transparent noodle, with a hint of ginger in the mix.

After clearing that up, it was on to the main event. After weaving our way through the alleys of Insadong, we arrived at 오수 (Osu), with '흑두부' (heuk dubu/black tofu) advertised on the window.  Shortly after ordering, our banchan arrived, followed by our meal (which, as Dan pointed out, was presented on a kimchi pot lid): a large platter of 보쌈 (bossam/sliced pork) with raw oysters and black tofu.

The oysters were served on a bed of strips of dried radish (무) tossed in a spicy red sauce. Though I'd sampled this before, I previously thought it was strips of fruit, not radish. Dan explained that the radish is cut into strips and then dried before being used in this dish, which imparts a sweetness to the vegetable. This was my first time having bo ssam with oysters; the fresh taste of the oysters cut through the fattiness of the meat. With just a little ssam jang and a slice of raw garlic, it made a great ssam(wrap).

All three of us agreed that the oysters were the best: fresh, clean-tasting and just a bit briny. The tofu itself, other than being a bit nuttier than the regular white tofu I'm used to having, was not all that distinctive.

Since we were going for tofu, I had expected something lighter than what we ended up ordering. Bo ssam is something that I can't eat more than a few times a year, as it's so heavy. Overall though: Good food, comfortable atmosphere, and interesting company. I'm glad I answered that email.


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