Tag Archives: Korean

Food & How To: Fried Tofu Stuffed with Rice (Yubuchobap: 유부초밥)

It’s just about the weekend, and what a long one we would have considering there would be no classes come Monday, as the country would celebrate its Independence Day. So, time for the last of summer outings with a tasty dish to bring along. Yey!

And what do we have? Yubuchobap. A Korean recipe of fried and marinated tofu stuffed with rice. Check this out.

So. So, so simple, right? This is why this recipe is ideal for picnics and even for your kids’ lunch packs. Easy to handle, carry, and generally cheap to make. Just make sure you know where the nearest Korean grocery store is for your Yubuchobap kit.

Yubuchobap kit

However, if there’s no such store in your area, do not worry about the exact ingredients. Instead, just try to use the closest substitutes; otherwise, try to experiment and make them yourselves. Like, the flattening and molding of the tofu wrap for one. Or using chia seeds instead of sesame seeds (this is everywhere, we’re just looking to experiment) to dip your Yubuchobap.

Experimenting is good since you could come up with a tastier dish to your liking instead of continuing with a food monotony. See?!

Consider the benefits of Chia seeds and try experimenting

And speaking of something tastier, remember also that you could still add some spices and vegetables like broccoli, carrot and onion for a more flavorful and healthy Yubuchobap. Just light fry those veggies before mixing them with your rice.

The dipping of the Yubuchobap on the seeds

Still, if you just want to save preparation time, the kit’s ingredients will do without any need to add anything anymore. Just try to use high quality rice not just for its taste but for fluffiness.


Food & How To: Omurice (오므라이스)

Among the many dishes in Korea, t’is one of those that intrigued us especially since it was the favorite meal in the 2012 Korean drama ‘Rooftop Prince’.

Still, without even trying to look at the preparation but merely seeing the ‘finished product’, obviously it’s an omelette; and so we now understand the name, Omeu-raiseu or ‘omelette rice’. Yep, it’s got a lot of stuff inside that yellow covering, err, ‘scrambled’ egg..

Wanna see how it’s done? Check this out.

Okay, there may be many ingredients but it’s actually very simple — or easy to make, so don’t sweat it. Speaking of ingredients, realize also that they are not cut in stone but replaceable especially the sausages where you could use just about any other meat instead. What’s important is the ‘slicing’ and the mixing of ’em all since you would be wrapping them up afterwards.

The Ingredients

Anyway, since we have seen the ‘Rooftop Prince’, we can not help but compare Maangchi’s Omurice to the drama version; like did you notice how they were actually turned into an omelette?? Maangchi first formed the cooked ingredients into the bowl before setting it aside and cooking a thin omelette — which she would then use to wrap the ingredients with.

Meanwhile, the ‘Rooftop Prince’ version had the cooked ingredients poured onto the omelette while it was being formed and fried. After a little heat, the omelette was shaped from the pan and served.

Hmm… Guess the drama version is more appealing, eh?! More so, it looks ‘neat’ to eat, too. Then, just let Maangchi’s ‘secret ingredient’ do its thing and sway your palate. Hehe. Don’t forget your ketchup!


Food & How To: Emergency Kimchi (yangbaechu-kimchi: 양배추김치)

Was pleasantly surprised when we found out that there’s in fact this Kimchi version called ’emergency kimchi’. Really? You know, all along we thought that Kimchi was just the traditional one, or if ever there’s a variation to it — it’s not like ’emergency’. Whoa??

Anyway, that’s our food feature for the day, ‘Emergency Kimchi’!

Hmm… Cabbage, ‘hot pepper flakes’, fish sauce, green onion, garlic, salt and carrot. The ingredients are pretty much the same (and quite common, wherever, even the sesame seeds) actually except for the cabbage where the traditional kimchi uses the ‘napa cabbage’ instead of the regular one.

Some of the Ingredients

Well, perhaps one reason that made this an ’emergency’ kimchi is that Maangchi brought her own ‘hot pepper flakes’ —  assuming that it maybe hard to find in an unfamiliar place or country. So.

Also, as we all know, ‘freshness’ is always important in food. Whatever it maybe.

In storing, be sure to make it air tight

Just take note, for recipes that require mixing fresh, uncooked ingredients — those powder, sauces and all would be harder to ‘stick and sink’, so make sure you use a bigger bowl where you could mix them better; otherwise, don’t just mix it batch by batch but do a ‘remix’. Sounds like music. Hehe.

Till next time.. Ciao!

Food & How To: Spicy Rice Cake (Korean Ddeokbokki: 떡볶이)

If you have been watching Korean dramas, our featured food for the the day is one of the most mentioned delicacies you would hear; and that’s the Ddeokbokki, or the Spicy Rice Cake.

The Ingredients
The Ingredients

The Ingredients: 1 pound of cylinder shaped rice cake, water, 7 dried anchovies, 6 x 8 dried kelp, 1/3 cup hot pepper paste, 1 tbsp sugar, 3 green onions.. Optional: 2 hard boiled eggs and 1/2 pound fish cakes.

So now, let’s see how it’s done..

Know what, if you’re not familiar with Korean food, you might wonder why is this dish like soaked in ‘liquid’? Isn’t it rice, and a cake at that?! Incidentally, doesn’t this rice cake look like the street food ‘squid ball’ in the Philippines? At least the shape is street-food like.

Ddeokbokki with egg
Ddeokbokki with egg

Anyway, while the dish is called a ‘spicy rice cake’, it’s not really a key ingredient to Ddeokbokki’s flavor — but the dried anchovies. And so, as Maangchi says, try not to forget this particular ingredient; if you do, it wouldn’t be the ‘spicy rice cake’ many came to love.

Anchovy and Kelp
Anchovy and Kelp

As for issue of finding the other Korean ingredients, well, don’t you worry — specialty stores has been sprouting like mushroom, not to mention that they could already be found in leading supermarkets in the country, and yes, across the globe as well.


Finally, while spicy food has been a staple in many Asian countries, it has been gaining more ground the world over. Hey, after all it’s the Korean Wave! So, try this and enjoy!

Food & How To: Gamjajeon (Korean)

Gamjajeon is a Korean dish that’s otherwise known as the potato pancake. Oh, must be real starchy, eh?

Well, better see how it’s done — then taste — before judging. Hehe.

Wow, if there’s more to potatoes than fries then it must be cool!

Anyway, potatoes and grated onion would obviously be too watery; and so, starch is needed. Hmm… Kinda reminds me of the Filipino dish, ‘torta’. You know, the recipe of ‘diced’ potatoes, beaten eggs, some ground pork if you wish, but definitely with cornstarch.

Main ingredients being mixed


Still, what’s interesting here is the sauce. Like for one, why use ‘soy sauce’?? It’s potatoes — and fried! Like French fries!? Which, as we know, uses ketchup for dipping! So?

Trying it out would answer curiosity. And it only takes 10 minutes!

In the end, being made of starch, it’d indeed be chewy; at the same time — crunchy like fries since t’was fried. But the taste? It’s for you to deliciously find out with the help of ’em sauce..


Movie Review: Train to Busan (2016)

While there are those who would compare this film to ‘World War Z’, the movie that came to our minds was ‘Resident Evil’. The zombies. The infecting..

Anyway, even the trailer was good. Yeah, the presentation and stuff — just like a major Hollywood production! From the breaking up of the scenes to the texts on the board, it’s real ‘cool’! Indeed, it really gives you that urge to watch the film. So, let’s take a look.

Wow, have you seen this movie? Not yet? Yes? Well, you know what really makes this movie exciting? The zombies themselves.

Oh, not because they are zombies; but because they are a different breed compared to what we normally see, even those made from Hollywood. How come? They are faaaaast — with a capital ‘F’!

Okay, some of the make ups may not be perfect (as some are just too pale, you know, the blood) but since the pace is fast, not many would really notice it. Except for the old lady’s zombie acting, she should have been a little ‘fiercer’. However, what’s quite noticeable though is the pregnant lady’s prosthetics. It kinda becomes ‘square’ when she runs, or gets up and down something ‘steep’. Like the train’s steps and stuff. They could have tightened the binds a bit.

The Cast from left: Kim Soo-Ahn (kid), Gong Yoo (dad), Ma Dong-Seok (husband), Jung Yu-mi (pregnant lady), Sohee (girlfriend), and Choi Woo-shik (baseball guy)

Also, could a pregnant woman actually get up and crawl on the side of a train’s baggage area?? Seriously. Then get down also?

Can’t really classify this as a horror movie, or even suspense. They were all locked up in a train, and so you’d know that with zombies on board, passengers are bound to die and you know how. It’s a matter of who, and so it’s a thriller — as even most of the lead characters, didn’t make it; which is actually what makes the movie great.

Kim Ui-Seong (C), the cause of many deaths
Kim Ui-Seong (C), the selfish COO

Nahh, of course we want those good guys to survive. But since t’is a film, doing so makes it predictable. In most films of such kind, you see, the main characters do survive — yet in an obvious manner. So, this film is cool! However, if only the production thought of a more creative way for even Gong Yoo (main actor) to survive then that would have made the film even better.

We liked the idea that zombies can’t see in the dark as well. They’re zombies, supposedly ‘dark-based’, so why can’t they see in the dark? That’s unique. It gives the ‘living’ time to maneuver and survive. And yeah, these zombies doesn’t even know how to open doors eh. These things only shows that once ‘dead’, they become ‘brain-dead’. Haha!

Human nature in crisis
Human nature in crisis

Just wished one thing. They could have also shown exactly how the ‘disease’ spread. Not just a deer coming back to life, or a phone call from Gong Yoo’s colleague telling him that it started from their plant. There should be something more concrete. Even a scene for it.

In the end, the movie was a nice depiction of human nature in crisis.


Food & How To: Ox Bone Hangover Soup (Korean)

For those having a tough time shaking off a hangover, wouldn’t it be nice if there was some kinda miracle juice? No kidding. Hey, some may be surprised but there are those who try to get rid of their hangover by taking paracetamol. Seriously. And the one who does it says, “Yeah, it’s pretty effective actually.”

No. No. Don’t try it. Some drinks coffee though. Hmm…

Then again, one key to recovering from hangover is hydration. Since, getting intoxicated was through liquid, ‘fighting’ it would be through liquid as well. So, drink, drink, drink! Oh, not again! Water? Juice? Yes. But more so, our feature for today. Ox Bone Hangover Soup.

Well, well.. As a hangover soup, the most obvious disadvantage (if we may call it such) of making ‘ox bone soup’ would be ‘time’. For starters, you need to boil it for around 3 hours — plus the cooking process itself. So this is like, you already gotta think of preparing the soup once you hear that your partner or whoever you are with goes out to drink. That means, you have to wake up a little earlier than usual to make the Ox Bone Hangover Soup (Ppyeo-haejangguk: 뼈해장국) for your ‘patient’ to have it upon getting up in the morning.

Another ‘disadvantage’ would be the price of the ox bone. It’s pretty expensive to be a ‘regular’ home meal. T’is why Maangchi also said that others might even think you’re rich, or there’s an occasion if they learn that you’re having the ‘hangover soup’. 0918-bonebroth-strain-590x332

However, the ‘benefits’ of course, aside from relieving one’s hangover would be its taste. Haha! Delicious, yeah! Even just from the looks of it — it’s like a mix of bulalo or balbacua and sopas. Wow!

Still, with the way Maangchi prepared the soup, she’s sort of ‘strict’ with measurements even if she says otherwise. Notice, just 6 cups of soup to be mixed with the vegetables? While the leftover, you could consume it ‘independently’. Yep, that’s the nice thing about it.

And that would make you forget the price of the ox bone! Enjoy!

Movie Review: Love Forecast (2015, Korean)

Okay, this Korean movie was actually released last year yet still, not everyone has heard about it — especially since it’s not from Hollywood. But that didn’t prevent Love Forecast into becoming a hit in Korea, of course; and thus extending to social media as well. So, here we are talking about it.. Yeah!

The Synopsis. It’s a story of childhood friends who grew up and have known each other for 18 years. The girl, Kim Hyun-woo (Moon Chae-won), became a weather reporter known for her beauty and elegance on television; but off-screen, her life is a little tricky. Meanwhile, the guy, Kang Joon-soo (Lee Seung-gi), turned out as a mild-mannered elementary school teacher who gives too much of himself in his relationships but always ends up getting dumped.

Moon Chae-won and Lee Seung-gi
Moon Chae-won and Lee Seung-gi

While Joon-soo secretly loved Hyun-woo all those years, she never really had any romantic feelings for him instead falling for a married colleague in Lee Dong-jin (Lee Seo-jin) — then after the breakup, she dates with nice but boring photographer Hyo-bong (Jung Joon-young).

Eventually, you know what would happen next.

Many romantic movies goes the same route actually, wherever the origin — they wind up with each other. Then again, this film is a ‘little modern’ to what we normally see from Korean dramas — so, fanatics could be a bit surprised when the pair loses control of themselves and ends up in ‘you know where’ — tho it won’t be literally shown.

53725-288366While it may not be a big deal to many in today’s world, it still is to conservatives. To those who really value commitment and not just simply enjoying the moment. After all, not everything fun is good. But what’s truly fulfilling is when you know that you have really preserved yourself for ‘the one’.

Uhm, the story is pretty common. And acting in romantic comedies does not require much depth, so there’s not much to say about it unless it’s totally awful. Would we recommend it?

Well personally, I watched this movie because I admire the stars for their wholesome image — not to mention the great fashion sense of Moon Chae-won, the female lead. Girls could certainly pick up a lot of styling ideas in the way Chae-won dresses up and carries herself.



If only for that — then watch this. There’s so much more, you’ll see.

TV Set Design: Rooftop Prince (Korean 2012)

Living on a higher ground has always been fascinating to many that even hotels and condos recognize this — that’s why the high prices; yet for some, what is it really like to live in an attic? And so we now feature a wonderful 2012 Korean drama, mainly set in a cool attic..

Rooftop Prince. It is about  a Joseon crown prince who, after his wife’s mysterious death, time travels to the future facing unheralded challenges but inevitably understanding the events and eventually finding his fated love. Let’s check out this rooftop ‘design’..

a3 stairs
Yong Tae Yong (Crown Prince Lee Gak) getting down the rooftop stairs
a4 stairs road
Entrance is by the road.. with Park Ha (Bu Yong) climbing up

Well, obviously made for the city. And just the ‘right entrance’ to the rooftop — the side stairs. Otherwise, there’d be no privacy.

a6 roof set
Especially charming at night.. Good lighting and color combination.
a8 entrance
After the main door is a sliding door
a9 living
Love the balcony, notice it?
a10 living
Could there have been a better way to fix the TV?
a11 living
To the right of the stairs is a small dining and kitchen

The design is somewhat ‘box type’ but cool just the same.

a13 dining kitchen
The kitchen-dining area

The dining area normally speaks of how big the ‘family’ is.. Cute, eh?!

a14 entertainment guest room
Entertainment or hangout area
a15 lee gak room
Yong Tae Yong’s bedroom
Yong Tae Yong's bed
Yong Tae Yong’s bed

Beautiful sheets and lighting but could have added a little table..

a18 park ha room 2
Park Ha’s bedroom
Park Ha's dresser
Park Ha’s dresser

Don’t you just love the ceiling?! The ambiance is just refreshing!

If there’s anything to fix, it could only be the living room’s curtain — it’s just a little too green with the yellow beside it. In all, just lovely!

My Home: Korean Interior Design (HanOk)

Okay, our featured image is not the ‘interior’ but an area west of Bukchon Hanok Village in Seoul. Right, it’s just to refreshen you on how it looks from the outside.

But of course, as many of us have watched Korean dramas so, we do understand that they are traditionally ‘floor-based’ although they’ve wonderfully evolved in their interior designing. And here’s the latest.

Wow, just beautiful designs by Han Jung wook! It’s actually a nice blend of the traditional and the modern; like the bedroom for one.

0226 korean inspired cute-bedroom by home designingIn this case, the walls and windows might be modern but the bed is still a bit low — traditional in a sense — which is in fact cute..

Bit modern han ok (Photo: freshhomedecor)
Bit modern hanok (Photo: freshhomedecor)

That even some of their hotels use traditional designs as a ‘come on’!

Just nice, eh?! At least we get to feel how it is to be in a hanok, or a Korean traditional house. An nyeong haseyo 안녕하세요 !!