korean

Quick language lesson: jeon means “pancake” in Korean. This term is associated with a variety of pancakes, from kimchi to kale pancakes. Today’s recipe, Pajeon, stands as the basis for many further layers of the Korean pancake underground; its most popular descendent is Haemul Pajeon, or seafood scallion pancake, which is featured in Paleo Takeout. While the seafood variation is a family favorite, I also appreciate the simplicity and ease of this simple Pajeon.

Speaking of simple and easy, did you guys hear that Melissa Joulwan is releasing a third cookbook, Well Fed Weeknights, on November 1st? She just announced it yesterday, and I’m super excited about it – 128 complete meals (proteins, veggies, fats, and garnishes) ready in 45 minutes. I sent out an email to my newsletter list yesterday morning with more details, which you can read here (it includes a recipe from the book, plus a link to Mel’s free 70-page PDF sampler of the book!).

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This week’s recipe has a personal twist to it. I recently teamed up with Skype to help create some healthy eating challenges for popular vlogger Claire Marshall as part of their SkypeFit project. I’ve had a few roles in the campaign, to include jumping on Skype’s group chats to answer food-related questions, and taking over the Skype Instagram account for a weekend. My favorite piece has been brainstorming with Claire to help her find healthy food solutions.

In our chats, Claire had mentioned that she loves eating out (don’t we all!), Korean barbecue in particular, which is too often laden with sickeningly-sweet marinades. Additionally, she’s been trying to cut back on red meat. So we settled on a weeknight-friendly version of Bibimbap, made with spicy chicken (Dak Bulgogi, 닭불고기), and I challenged her to try and make it on her own. She made a video of the experience, which you can find after the recipe below.

Legend has it that Bibimbap (비빔밥) originated from the belief that leftover food cannot be brought into the New Year. For that reason, Koreans started the practice of mixing together various ingredients in one bowl, and this dish rose to prominence in the early 20th century. Today, you can find it on nearly every Korean restaurant menu.

Let’s talk about the tweaks I made for today’s recipe; in the end, this dish isn’t unlike the Bibimbap found in my first cookbook, but with a few conscious steps to speed up the cooking process for our busy lives. Bibimbap is typically served with Gochujang (고추장), a spicy red sauce, but the intensely flavorful chicken replaces the Gochujang while eliminating the need to make a separate sauce. I also sweetened the marinade with my favorite one-two punch when making Korean barbecue: honey and applesauce. Finally, instead of asking Claire to make her own kimchi (the recipe is in both of my cookbooks, but takes upwards of 5 days to prepare traditionally), I left it as an optional side assuming that your local market sells some.

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Today is kind of a big deal for our family. After nearly two years of work, The Ancestral Table is finally in stores today! To celebrate, I thought it would be fitting to post my cookbook recipe for Japchae, which is a common party dish in Korea today.

Japchae has its origins in the 17th century; fittingly, it was first served at a party for the reigning king. Originally made with just vegetables and mushrooms, sweet potato noodles (dangmyeon, also called glass noodles) were introduced in the 20th century and are now an integral part of the dish.

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Today’s recipe is unique in that it’s basically a combination of two traditional dishes: Chicken Long Rice (Hawaiian) and Japchae (잡채, Korean). They’re both very similar, and in making either dish Paleo-friendly, they both just kinda mixed into this one dish you see above. Although it doesn’t have an official name, don’t worry: it tastes great!

Chicken Long Rice is a Hawaiian luau food that consists of chicken broth, mung bean starch noodles, chicken, and green onions. It was brought to the islands by Chinese immigrant workers in the 19th century, and is now integrated into Hawaiian cuisine.

Japchae is a Korean dish that is traced back to the 17th century, which traditionally was made with vegetables and mushrooms (Japchae literally means “a mixture of vegetables”), and sometimes with beef. Since the 20th century, sweet potato noodles (dangmyeon, 당면) have been a major part of the dish.

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NOTE: An updated version of this recipe appears in my cookbook, The Ancestral Table.

Although flanken-cut short ribs (sometimes called L.A. or English cut ribs) are more commonly found in Korean restaurants today, every so often you’ll find that a chef that prepares kalbi (galbi, 갈비) in the traditional way – by using a full length of rib that’s filleted in layers. This traditional cut is called wang galbi/kalbi, which is literally translated as “king ribs”.

My most recent box of goodies from US Wellness Meats included a package of their delicious beef short ribs. This beautiful one-pound rack was the perfect opportunity to make some “king ribs” of my own.

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Yesterday I posted my own recipe for one of Alex Boake’s awesome illustrations. I was really happy with the results.

Additionally, I’ve got a little secret: in writing up one of her creations, I secretly coerced her into making an illustration of one of my recipes. She decided to take on my kalbi recipe, and her piece is probably the coolest thing on the entire internet right now. Head over to her blog to check out her post about my recipe.

NOTE: An updated version of this recipe appears in my cookbooks, The Ancestral Table and Paleo Takeout.

Kalbi (also known as Galbi) is one of my favorite meat dishes to grill at home. Unfortunately, all of the commercially-available marinades contain all sorts of nefarious ingredients, so I decided to try making the sauce from scratch. Luckily, it turned out to be really easy and tasted great.

This recipe calls for one Asian pear, but a regular golden pear, or even unsweetened applesauce, will do in a pinch.

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