adventures in cooking–짜장면,떡볶이, 파전

Recently a few of my Korean friends came over to my apartment to cook Korean food. I’ve been wanting to learn for a while so I could make it myself, and it was a fantastically awesome time of friendship and so, so much eating. I wanted to kill myself a little from the massive amounts of food I consumed.

But that aside, the food was pretty darn awesome. Granted, the coconut jjajangmyeon was a little odd…but it was still good.

So what did we make?

20140329_141557First up was tteokkbokki, a traditional Korean snack that roughly consists of rice cakes in spicy sauce. You can usually find fish cake in there as well as onion.


This turned out well, although we did forget to take out the anchovies used as flavoring…so we had some friends in our food.



Next up was the jjajangmyeon, or black bean noodles. It sounds and looks terrible but tastes fantastic (when made well). It’s actually a Korean Chinese food, meaning that it’s their version of Chinese food, but it’s just Korean. I’m not sure this exists in China. But it’s a really popular delivery item, and if you’ve ever watched the KDrama Coffee Prince, you may remember the disgusting scene of Go Eun Chan and Hwang Min Yeop mixing all manner of unmentionable things in it.

I was trying to be healthy though, and used coconut oil, which gave it an odd flavor. It wasn’t bad, but next time I’ll use something different and hope it turns out better.

20140329_155705Last up was the Pajeon, and though we were already too full, we dutifully ate. It was so delicious, in fact, I ate until the near death I mentioned above. Pajeon is a kind of pancake made with vegetables, in this case, green onions and white onions. Pa is green onion in Korean, so pajeon is “green onion pancake,” basically. You can also make kimchijeon with kimchi or anything, I suppose. Very versatile.

All the recipes I found on – this site is incredible. Any Korean food you can think of is on there.

It was actually quite amusing when I told my Korean friends I wanted to make this. I think Tteokkbeokki and Pajeon are homemade quite a lot, but from their comments, making Jjajanmyeon was a foreign concept. A bit like trying to make restaurant hamburgers or pizza or something all from scratch.

But aside from the unfortunate coconut, it was a huge success! Korean cooking GO!


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