Yangnyeom Chicken

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During our new year celebration I made some yangnyeom chicken. It’s basically Korean spicy chicken with a hint of sweetness. This dish is perfect for celebrations because it goes well with beer!

Below is the recipe I that I use. I know my chicken doesn’t look too good on the photo but it actually tastes good! Feel free to adjust my recipe to your liking.

YANGNYEOM CHICKEN
Serving size: 3-4

Ingredients:

1kg whole or choice cut chicken
Marinate in-
3tbsp Cooking wine
2tbsp Ginger juice

1/2cup flour with a pinch of salt
1/2cup potato starch
Enough oil for deep-frying
Optional garnish: crushed peanuts

For seasoning sauce-
6tbsp water
5tbsp maple syrup (or corn syrup,honey)
4tbsp soy sauce
4tbsp unsweetened strawberry jam
5tbsp ketchup
4tbsp red pepper paste(add more for extra spice)
3tbsp onion juice
2tbsp brown sugar
1/2tsp pepper

Instructions:

  1. Clean and chop your chicken.
  2. Marinate chicken and set aside for 20 mins.
  3. While waiting, make seasoning sauce.
  4. Pre-heat the oil in a pan or pot, whichever works for you for deep-frying.
  5. Prepare potato starch and flour mix.
  6. If your chicken is ready, coat it evenly with the flour mix.
  7. Once the oil is hot enough, start frying chicken. You can do it in batches if your pan or pot is not enough.
  8. Deep-fry your chicken into a nice golden brown.
  9. To make it crispy, you’ll need fry it twice. After frying, set it aside.
  10. Cook your seasoning sauce. Bring it to a boil.
  11. Toss your chicken into the seasoning sauce. Coat each piece nice and evenly.
  12. Serve the chicken by itself or garnish it with peanuts.

I will be posting a video on youtube of me making this dish. You can go to my channel and check it out later.

I’d love to hear from you! Let me know if you’ve tried this and if you have any suggestions for me. Thanks for stopping by!

 

Non-credit Korean Classes

If you follow my blog and/or watch my videos on YouTube, you may already be wondering if I am interested in Korean culture. The answer is no secret, I am very much into it! I have been watching k-dramas for as long as I can remember, I listen to k-pop, I cook k-food, I’ve been to Seoul and Jeju not too long ago, and yes, I am also taking Korean classes!

I used to wok at Renison University College in Waterloo and I found out about their non-credit Korean classes. They offer language classes and they also have a culture club you can join. While participating in the club is free, the language class comes with a minimal fee. Pretty much everyone can sign up and join.

This winter term, they are offering Integrated Korean, Levels 1 and 2. I have taken level 1 last year and I might be joining the second level this year.

It is a classroom set-up which I really like because I focus better that way. The book you use in class will be given to on your first day. They also give handouts as you go through the course.

My experience in this class has been great. The lessons were easy to follow and the class is always active. This class is offered once a week for three months which I find a bit sad because the interval between classes is so long I just end up forgetting half of the lesson. That’s just me though.

The culture club meetings happen once week too. Here, we actually learn about Korean culture. It has been really fun for me. I mean, for starters, you learn loads of stuff for free! It’s also open this winter term but I might not join this time around.

We celebrate festivities like Korean Thanksgiving or Lunar New Year, we talked about masks, stamps and calligraphy. We made a bunch of different food and did a tea ceremony. We also watched movies, took part in events and played games. Every meeting offers something new! I can’t really move to Korea to learn all these stuff so it’s like Korea comes to me instead.

I really hope nothing comes up so I could join the language classes this term. After all, I have met a lot of amazing people throughout my time here and I couldn’t be more thankful. If learning Korean language or culture is part of your 2018 goals, planning to go to Korea or just want to try something new, come and join! I might even see you around. Let’s share our common love for Korean language and culture!

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Basic Kimbap

I’m stuck in winter at the moment but I have that summer state of mind. So what do I do to bring extra cheer to my grey days? I make a classic “picnic” food—kimbap!

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I have tried making kimbap (Korean seaweed rice rolls) a couple of times before with my friends but I’ve never really tried rolling them myself. Now that I’ve tried it, here’s the recipe and some tips I recommend if it’s your first time as well.

KIMBAP
Serving size: 6 rolls

Ingredients:
6 sheets of roasted seaweed paper/ laver
4 cups short grain rice

200g beef
Seasoning for beef:
2tbsp soy sauce
1tbsp cooking wine
1tbsp sesame oil
1tsp minced garlic
a pinch of pepper and sugar

1/2 carrot
1/2 danmuji (yellow pickled radish)
2 eggs

1 medium bowl of spinach
Seasoning for spinach:
1tsp minced garlic
1tsp sesame oil
a pinch of pepper and salt

Instructions:

1. Cook the rice.

2. While waiting cut the beef into long thin strips. Season it. Set aside.

3. Make scrambled eggs, fry it flat.

4. Cut the egg into long strips as well.

5. Boil salted water, enough for your spinach.

6. While waiting, cut the danmuji into long strips. (You can also buy this pre-cut for kimbap making)

7. Julienne the carrot. (Optional: stir-fry this and season it with a little bit of salt)

8. Blanch the spinach for 30 seconds.

9. Drain it and rinse it under cold water until is cool enough to touch.

10. Squeeze the excess water and season it.

11. Stir-fry the beef.

12. See if the rice is ready (You can season it with with a little bit of sesame oil once it’s done).

13. On a flat surface, lay your bamboo rolling mat (using this is optional but I highly recommend it for beginners).

14. Lay a sheet of seaweed paper on top of the mat and spread a layer of rice on it. (I recommend leaving an inch on top of the sheet without rice)

15. On the lower side, layer strips of egg, beef, carrot, danmuji and spinach.

16. Roll the seaweed nice and tight.

17. Seal it by using water to moisten the edge you left plain and roll it all the way.

18. Repeat 13-17 until you’ve used up all your ingredients.

19. Cut the rolls and serve! (I recommend cleaning the knife every now and then to ensure a clean cut)

It’s really easy to adjust this recipe to match your personal liking. You can basically put anything you want in your kimbap! I’ll be posting a video on how I made this the first time so check my youtube channel if you want to see how I did it. Try it yourself and let me know how it goes!

Dear Diary..

I was once dubbed “Piding” who I understood was the town’s crazy lady. I was countlessly compared to my brother who was effortlessly smart and charming. I wore a lot of tomboy outfits in between wearing my ‘girly’ ones and got looked at like it’s wrong. I got my heart-broken during a time when I felt like I only had that one person to rely on. My own mother told me that nobody wanted me when they found out she was pregnant.

The little things we say and do can make or break a spirit. I thought I wasn’t creative enough or funny enough. I thought I wasn’t smart enough or friendly enough. I thought I wasn’t beautiful enough. I thought I wasn’t enough. Every single day, I constantly feel that the world would have fine even if I wasn’t here.

God knows how much I beat myself up thinking that every bad thing I had to hear and feel was my fault. I work so damn hard to pick up my confidence after a night of crying on my own and go out the next day with a smile. I keep telling myself to love me more. This whole thing, it’s a process.

If this post reaches you, and you are in any way like me, I just want to let you know that you are enough. I know it’s a pain to work through all of the self-doubt but you can do it. Sure, you’ll have days when you’ll feel extra shitty about yourself or the situation you are in; But you’ll have better days too. You just have to hold on ‘til you get there.

I am a work in progress. I’m no better than anyone else who has insecurities and self-doubt; But I do what I can to feel better about myself. I try my hardest to love myself for who I am. I am proud of all my flaws and I promise to treat myself better than yesterday.

This whole experience of blogging and vlogging are a couple of my ways to express my determination in building my confidence even more. It doesn’t matter if it’s just a couple of people who sees me. For me, to be seen by anybody at all is a confirmation of my existence. I am valid, I am enough.

Thank you for going through this post. I just really want to let this out of my chest. Some people are trying. So you should try too. Be kind to everybody, even yourself.

Samyang Nuclear Spicy Ramen

My mom mistakenly bought the 2x Spicy Samyang Ramen that everybody’s talking about. It wasn’t really much of a “challenge” video but we filmed ourselves eating it anyway.  I always thought I have a fair tolerance for spice but the ramen made me cry like a baby! See what happened! Hope you like it!

Quick and Easy Kimchi Jjigae

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If you’re looking for a quick and simple Korean soup that you could make right at home, you have come to the right place! I’m sharing here today how I cook Kimchi Jjigae at home.
 ——-
KOREAN KIMCHI JJIGAE
Serving Size: 2 Persons
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Ingredients:
100g Pork
150g Well ripened Kimchi
50ml Kimchi Juice
100g Soft Tofu
30g Onion
20g Green Onion
800ml Water
 —–
Seasoning:
1tsp Sugar
1tsp Minced Garlic
2tsp Red Pepper Paste
1tbsp Soybean Paste (opt)
1tbsp Sesame Oil
 ——-
Instructions:
    1. Cut pork into bite size chunks. Rinse it in cold water then set aside.
    2. Chop you kimchi about the same width as your pork.
    3. Slice the onion.
    4. Slice the green onion diagonally.
    5. Mince the garlic.
    6. Make your seasoning and mix it with the pork and kimchi.
    7. Heat up an oiled pot. While waiting, cut your tofu into bit size pieces then set it aside.
    8. When pot is hot, put the pork and kimchi mix.
    9. Stir ocassionally making sure the pork is cooked evenly.
    10. When pork looks to be 90% cooked, add about 600ml of the water.
    11. Add in the onion and the green onions. Cover and stir occassionally.
    12. When the water starts boiling, add the kimchi juice and the rest of the water. Leave it to boil again.
    13. If the pork is all cooked, turn of the heat. Transfer it into your serving bowl.
    14. Put in the tofu while soup is still very hot.
    15. Garnish it it green onions and serve!

 

If you want to turn this dish to a vegetarian version, simply substitute the pork with Shiitake Mushrooms. For vegans, find a vegan kimchi before starting this dish. Traditional kimchi is made with a seafood by-product like fish sauce and/or salted shrimp so you may want to check the label first.
This dish is so easy to make! I will put up a video of how I cook it on my YouTube channel so you could see it too. I hope you try this one yourself and let me know how it turns out!

Travel Throwback: A weekend in Jeju Island (Part 1)

So.. A weekend in Jeju Island? Yes! It’s possible! This is the throwback story of how I spontaneously added Jeju in my supposed to be 2-week Seoul travel itinerary.

I went to South Korea last Spring. I initially wanted to spend my entire vacation knowing every corner of Seoul. To my luck, I became good friends with Koreans from Jeju Island before my planned trip. I gave my word that I’ll stop by Jeju to see them and that’s what I did.

I only had a weekend to spare though. It’ll be my first time going to Jeju so I looked up “must-see” places that I think I could squeeze in.

I kid you not when I say, it was my first time backpacking by myself! On top of that, I was able to let go of my control-freak self and go without a detailed itinerary. Still, I think I managed to make the most out of my 3days!

I booked my plane ticket via Jeju Air and it was departing from Gimpo. I took the earliest flight I could manage so I can maximize my day. The moment I landed, I immediately looked up the way to Jusangjeolli Cliff. Turns out it was only a bus ride away.

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I know my photos won’t do this place any justice but believe me when I say it was truly a sight to see!

The black pillars of hexagonal-shaped rocks was carved by mother nature herself. You can look at it from a view deck above. I was there for a while, it was a worthy welcome and I went hungry for more sights to see.

There is a park around the area as well. I didn’t wander around those parts for too long though. I took time looking around somewhere else.

While trying to figure out how to get to my next destination, I followed the road where I initially got off.

Oh, the beauty of spring.. More importantly, the beauty of getting lost with nature!

I could stay and take photos forever but the reality is I needed to go see more places. I took another bus ride. Next on my list is Jeongbang Waterfall; But my map led me to Sojeongbang Waterfall.

The way to the falls is a bit sketchy. But when you get there, you’ll find that it’s a pleasant little side trip. Almost nobody there but me.

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I breathe in the scenery for a while. I have a relationship with water that I can never put into words.

After resting there for a bit, I continued walking to the falls I’m originally after. It was a good thing that I wore a comfortable outfit.

Jeongbang Falls is said to be the only one in Asia that leads directly to the ocean. Isn’t that amazing? Life tends to me lead me to the ocean whenever I “fall” too.

I love it! I just love water falls, ok?! I stayed here until I was able to regain all of my energy. Before I know it, it was time for me to find my way home.

I could trust my map again this time, right? Wrong! Lol. This is where my most embarrassing experience as a tourist unfold..

I would love to continue on, but all my babbling about Day 1 has cost me an entire blog!
I’m sure you want to hear more. How about you head on the next parts and I’ll talk to you there?~