Asian Food: Bungeossamanko 붕어싸만코 and Gukhwappang 국화빵 (Korean Ice Cream)

School’s finally finished this term and it’s time for me to take a rest. That means I can blog more! yipee!!!

So recently I went on a trip to Bangkok to watch Big Bang’s concert. All this time I have been craving for Korean food. From the province I live in, it’s not easy to find a Korean restaurant! There are 2 I think, but it’s kind of has a fusion taste which I don’t really think is delicious. And it ain’t cheap here!

Back when I was living in Cebu, there were a lot of Korean restaurants to choose from. And the range in prices were quite ok. Food was delicious as most of the restaurants were owned by Koreans and they had Korean chefs (fyi.. a lot of Koreans come to my city to study English so that’s why there were lots). Aside from restaurants, there were also Korean grocery stores. But from where I live now, there isn’t any!

Anyway, when I went to Bangkok I convinced my friend to go and have lunch with me in Korean Town. Actually, it’s not really a town, but it’s in Sukhumvit Place (Soi 12 in Bangkokg, between Asok and Nana stations of the Sukhumvit BTS — when going there get off at Asok station, it’s closer). After lunch we decided to eat some Korean Ice Cream and thank god I found my favorite – Bungeossamanko 붕어싸만코.  So I’ll be writing to you about 2 of my favorite korean ice creams: Bungeossamanko 붕어싸만코 and Gukhwappang 국화빵.

Bungeossamanko 붕어싸만코

This is what it looks like on the outside.

 

This ice cream is sometimes called the Fish Ice Cream to non Korean speakers. But don’t worry it tastes nothing like fish! It’s just shaped like a fish. But once you take a bite you’ll love it. The ice cream has a wafer thin layer outside and inside it, has vanilla ice cream with a red bean filling.

This ice cream is really good and I think the best part about it is the red bean filling. I know that in most countries, they don’t really eat red bean as a dessert. But in countries in East Asia they do. It’s sweet yummy goodness is to die for. It costs 40 baht for each ice cream here. A little more expensive than what I usually paid for back home.

Gukhwappang 국화빵

This ice cream is a bit similar to Bungeossamanko but it has a twist, it has ddeok 떡 in between the layer of vanilla ice cream and red bean paste. Ddeok is actually just rice cake. That’s how they call it in Korea. For the sake of comparison, it’s just like the Japanese mochi. By the way, the layer of ddeok is very thin, but since it’s frozen, it can be very hard to chew at times.

I wasn’t too familiar with this ice cream until one Korean friend introduced it to me. I am a mochi and red bean fan, and when you put those two together, I’d be on cloud nine! So when I tasted it, I immediately loved it. I actually prefer this than the first one. But unfortunately it’s difficult to get it. In the grocery store that we went to, there wasn’t any Gukhwappang. Even back home, it would be sold out immediately. I kind of miss it though..

Korean ice creams are very good and very delicious! It’s also very sweet. So if you are like me who has a sweet tooth, the next time you come by a Korean grocery store, try to look for these two ice creams and try it! It’s really good!

**credits: naver.com + as tagged

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Asian Food: Jolly Pong (Korean Snack)

So I saw Simon and Martina’s review some Korean snacks and I got curios about a snack called Jolly Pong. So one time I went Korean grocery store shopping, I made sure I bought one.

There are a lot of Korean are a handful of grocery stores in the city I live in because there are a lot of Korean who come here to study. So I had no difficulty looking for the the snack I wanted to buy. But I was shocked when I saw how much it was, it was like the price of 3 big Piatos snacks combined! But nevertheless I bought one.

When I opened the package, a small cardboard with a design came with it.  I was with a friend that time and we both were puzzled. We thought it was  like a collectible cardboard cut out that you usually see in those cereal boxes. I tried to read the instructions with my limited korean and found out that’s it’s supposed to be folded to scoop the jolly pang!

How cool is that.  This is how it looks like.

I just love how ingenious Koreans are when it comes to packaging. You should see their ice cream packages! They always make packages that are beneficial to their customers.

This is how the snack inside the bag looks like:

It’s like rice or some wheat popped into something like a pop corn. It’s flavored like a caramel flavored pop corn. When I tasted it, I didn’t really understand the taste and I didn’t know how to describe it. But the more I ate, the more I liked it. And it took me about 2 days to eat it (stopping in between of course) because it was just too many. I couldn’t eat all of it at one sitting because it became too sweet the more I ate. It’s a snack meant to be shared with friends.

I would definitely buy this snack again especially when I have those movie marathons! If you buy it just look for this sign and don’t forget to use the little cardboard box a scoop for your Jolly Pong!

*pictures are mine, take out with proper credits thanks!

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Asian Food: Jjajangmyeon

I am a fan of Asian cuisine. I love it more than I do European or American. I absolutely love the flavors. Because of this, I’ve decided to add something like an introduction of Asian food on my blog. I know a lot of people have it in their blogs, but I want to share also what I think about a kind of food. Thus, it will start with the first post… Jjajangmyeon.

Like my penchant for anything Korean, I also like Korean food. Actually, the first time I tried it, I was not too keen on trying it again. But the more I ate Korean, the more I liked it. And yes, I am now a convert. I buy kimchi whenever I can and I always have gim (dried laver) stock at home if I suddenly have the urge to eat. Gim is always good with hot rice!!

So for the first post, I am sharing about one of my favorite Korean dishes, the Jjajangmyeon.

What is it?

The Jjajangmyeon  짜장면 (spelled also as Jajangmyeon자장면) is noddles with black sauce. It is a Chinese Korean dish made of wheat noodles topped with a thick sauce made of chunjang (a salty black soybean paste). It is said to have been invented in the city of Incheon in a restaurant called Gonghwachun (공화춘). According to Lonely Planet, the restaurant is still there and it’s one of the places to visit to when you do a Chinatown walking tour in Incheon.

Some people might be scared with the appearance because of the black sauce. But i tell you it’s delicious, though it’s not for those who don’t like salty food (sometimes it’s salty because of the chujang). Most Korean food are spicy and hot, but Jjajangmyeon isn’t so it’s safe to eat.  It is sometimes cooked with vegetables and a little meat and then served with yellow colored pickled radishes (another one of my favorites).

The Jjajangmyeon is a very popular dish in Korea. I think you would recognize it if you saw the drama Coffee Prince. Who would ever forget the  eating contest scene??

An interesting thing in Korea is that there is something called Black Day, it’s held every April 14. All the single ladies, put your hand up because this is the die when single Korean ladies eat Jjajangmyeon, or any dish that has Jjajang (the black sauce).

How to Make Jjajangmyeon?

I really suck at cooking so I can’t make an instruction video. But hallelujah for youtube because there are a lot of people posting up instructional videos.

This is the best how to make jjajangmyeon video I’ve seen. She makes it look simple and her English is clear.

Good luck to making your own Jjajangmyeon! ㅋㅋㅋ

The Jjapageti  짜파게티

For people who can’t cook like me, there is always an alternative. And Korea, they have instant Jjajangmyeon, the Jjapageti.

It comes in two packs, the one you see above and in cup noodle form.

Usually the one in the cup noodle is prepared like cooking the noddles in hot water and then draining it leaving only a little water so a sauce base can be made and then mixing it all together.

But a Korean friend taught me a better and more delicious way to prepare it using the microwave. Open the lid, add the flavoring, put hot water (maybe half , just enough water to cook the noodles), then pop it to the microwave for 4-5 minutes. It’s really better than the old way of cooking jjapageti!

So that’s the Jjajangmyeon. If you have tried it but you think it’s too salty, try to visit another Korean restaurant. I have tried lots here in my place before I finally found one that suited my taste perfectly. 🙂

Hope this little introduction helps. ^_^

**credits: Maangchi@yt + wikipedia + lonelyplanet + as tagged

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