The verdict is in, the hong-eo experience warrants a hung jury.
At first I thought it made no sense to eat hong-eo (fermented skate fish), a food that smells like ammonia because its uric acid has to pass through and is ultimately stored in its flesh.
The dish in Korean is called hongeo samhap. Hongeo means skate and samhap translates as “harmonious trinity,” referring to the three elements of the dish – fermented skate, boiled pork belly and kimchi. In Korea, for around 40,000~50,000 won, a large collection of samhap is offered.
The fermented skate at first has a foul odor that is similar to the smell of ammonia, but many Koreans say that after a while the taste of this fermented fish is addictive.
Eaten alone, raw hong-eo is repugnant, yet the triple-decker, bite-sized samhap is rather tasty; it is strangely addictive…
While the pork fat provides a bit of sweetness, Kimchi, another fermented food, neutralizes hong-eo’s magical properties. Selective parts can be dipped into a dried red pepper and salt mix.
The dish is said to originate from Heuksan Island in South Jeolla, where fishermen discovered the main ingredient in hongeo samhap by accident.
Heuksan Island is famous for its high-quality skate fish. During the Joseon Dynasty, the skate from Heuksan Island was often brought to other parts of the country by boat. During this process, the fishermen discovered that even after a long journey, skate was still edible and that the fermentation that took place gave the meat a great, chewy texture and a slightly stinging sensation in your mouth.
The boiled pork belly and kimchi was originally served with the fish due to the fact that the skate was costly and rare. However, food experts now say that the three ingredients are extremely complimentary, as the pork gives a heartiness to the dish while the kimchi mitigates the grease from the pork as well as accentuating the fermented taste of the skate.
During the Joseon Dynasty, hongeo samtak (the same dish but including alcohol) was a favorite dish for parties and get-togethers and was served alongside makgeolli, or Korean rice wine. The dish is still eaten most with makgeolli, which also aids in diluting the rather pungent taste of the fermented skate.
Source : Hongeo: Not for the weak of stomach
So the final question must be asked, should you try it?
Answer: At least once.
And for those interested, here’s a video from Youtube about Hong-eo
“This is one of those foods that you can’t understand how it tastes unless you actually eat it.”
Skip to 3:15 to watch Andrew trying to keep it down here:
I was surfing through the net (Yahoo! News) and read this article…
How Bad Is the US Drought? (Source : http://news.yahoo.com/bad-us-drought-040658131.html?_esi=1)
And yeah, if you read the article…
This year, it’s extremely HOT… 😦
|Source : Yahoo! News Article|
Look at all the red regions…
While looking at the photo, patbingsu came up on my mind, and I started craving it all day.
Patbingsu (팥빙수) is just one of many red-bean based desserts in Korea. Pat (팥) is red azuki bean, boiled and sweetened to make a paste which is then layered atop bingsu, (빙수) or shaved ice. The ice itself is sweetened with condensed milk and makes for a lighter tasting treat than those ice cream sandwiches you’ve wolfed down in summers past. Topped with some rice cake, or ddeok (떡), for texture, this treat will cool and refresh.
Much like iced coffee confections, bingsu variations abound. Nokcha (녹 차, green tea), coffee and fruit variations are the most popular, and perfect for those who aren’t keen on red bean or rice cake. Bingsu topped with frosted cereal and fruit is often served as a side dish in hofs and noraebangs, perfect for re-hydrating sun-parched bodies and for thinning the alcohol coursing through soju-lined veins. Like most Korean dishes, bingsu’s made to share, so grab your besties and scoop up a bowl of bingsu, available at most bakeries, major restaurants, and cafes for 3,000 to 8,000 won. It would be a shame to leave Korea without trying the dessert that most of your students will list among their favorites!
And here’s the recipe I found online
(Source : http://www.maangchi.com/recipe/patbingsu)
Recipe – Traditional Patbingsu
|Source : Maangchi.com|
Red beans (azuki beans), sugar, vanilla, salt, shaved ice, sweetened condensed milk, rice cake, strawberries, banana, and kiwi.
Directions for 4 servings:
Preparation: Making sweet red beans:
Rinse and strain 1 cup of red beans and place them in a thick-bottomed pot.
1 cup of dried red beans will make a little more than 2 cups of sweet red beans. Each serving of patbingsu needs ½ cup of sweet red beans.
Add 4 cups of water. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over low heat for 10 minutes.
Lower the heat to simmer for 1 hour.
Open the lid and check if the beans are cooked well or not. The beans should be crushed easily.
Chew a sample of the beans. If there is something hard when you chew, you need to cook longer.
Drain the water and add 1 cup of sugar, 1 ts vanilla, and ½ ts salt. Mix well. *tip: the water from the beans can be used for making rice
Uncover and stir the sweet beans over low heat for 5 minutes.
Turn the heat off and let it cool down. Keep in the fridge.
Putting it together:
Add ½ cup of sweet red beans on the bottom of a dessert bowl.
Add 1½ cups of shaved ice over the sweet red beans.
Add chopped strawberries, banana, and kiwi on top of the ice.
Pour 2 tbs of sweetened condensed milk onto red beans and place 5-7 chopped rice cakes on top.
Serve right away with a spoon and enjoy!
This recipe and more can be found at the Maangchi cooking site here.
Patrons can enjoy tasty Korean dishes and at the same time stand a chance to win two tickets to South Korea. FOR those who love Korean cuisine, catch the Korean Food Fair 2012 at Isetan outlets. Isetan of Japan Sdn Bhd invites patrons to sample the exotic tastes of Korean food, beverages and snacks at its supermarkets in Suria KLCC, Lot 10 and One Utama shopping mall.
The event is jointly organised by Isetan of Japan Sdn Bhd, KMT Trading Sdn Bhd and Korea National Tourism Organisation. As you enter the supermarket, you will be warmly greeted by a group of pretty ladies in colourful hanbok, a Korean traditional dress. You will hear them say anyong haseyo (hello) as you step in and kamsa hamnida (thank you) as you leave.
Patrons stand a chance to win two tickets to South Korea when they spend more than RM100 in a single receipt. Isetan of Japan Sdn Bhd managing director Nobuharu Tutani said, “This marked the 15th year of the event and we are proud to once again share the exotic Korean fare with Malaysians.” “This year’s promotion is special as we have six Korean chefs joining us to showcase their authentic dishes.
“On top of that, the market also features a famous Korean modern restaurant called School Food.” said Tutani. School Food, he said, serves an array of traditional Korean cuisine including mari kimbab, jigae ramen, topokki, soup and other delicious dishes. KMT Trading Sdn Bhd managing director Matthew Lee said: “Over the past decade, we have been the provider of quality Korean food and beverage products in Malaysia.
“This year, we are expecting about 80,000 visitors in this 12-day event,” Lee said after the launch of the food fair at Isetan KLCC recently. Other kiosks available are Anbokja which offers handmade traditional Korean snacks and Cheung Nyeon Uh-Mook, offering a variety of ondane (fish cakes). The main highlight at the Anbokja is the popular rice snack called gangjeong. It is a sweet and hollow puff made from glutinous, rice flour and coated in honey, roasted peanuts, almond, pumpkin seed and raisin.
Other snacks available here are brown shimeji mushroom, mini king’s oyster mushroom and golden enoki mushroom. The Cheung Nyeon Uh-Mook kiosk offers “live-kitchen” concept where the chef is ever ready to prepare the guests’ orders on the spot, so that the fish cakes are freshly served. Among the items in the menu are delicious hawker food like crab uh-mook, cheese uh-mook, kimchi uh-mook, vegetable uh-mook and king sausage uh-mook. Other fresh food that customers can look forward to are poggy kimchi, seasoned green pepper and seasoned cuttlefish slice.
Another not to be missed dish is Korean ais kacang called patbingsu. Slightly similar to Malaysian dessert air batu campur, it is an ice-blended drink with a mixture of rice cake, red bean, fruit cocktail and jelly with chocolate, strawberry and milk syrups. Dozens of Korean-made products that will be featured throughout the event are fresh ginseng, which is the best choice in preparing samgyetang (ginseng chicken soup); organic pure green tea, mukkoli (Korean rice wine) and Korean instant noodle nong shim shin ramyun, among others.
Also present at the launch were the Korean Embassy first secretary and consul Jo Won Gab, second secretary Chung Chi Won, Tourism Malaysia to Minister of Tourism and Korea adviser Lee Jin Bok and Korea National Tourism Organisation managing director Yun Jae Jin. The Korean Food Festival 2012 ends on June 12.
Hur Kyung-wook, the South Korean Ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), speaks during a reception in Paris on April 2, 2012, to tourism officials from 40 countries and foreign representatives to the OCED. The South Korean delegation and the state-run Korea Foundation hosted the reception to promote traditional Korean cuisine, known as “hansik.”
Coming to Midtown before Christmas: Kristalbelli, Manhattan’s latest entry in the global quest to make Korean barbecue upscale, not just popular. Its chef, David Shim, has worked at Gramercy Tavern, L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon and Veritas. He promises Wagyu beef, organic vegetables, pork belly and the usual prize morsels for grilling.
But the main attraction will be the grills themselves. Each unit, set in the center of the table, is made of a single piece of crystal, with infrared heat that will produce higher temperatures than charcoal or gas grills. In Korea, both infrared and crystal cooking have been touted for their health benefits. Here, some backyard grill jockeys have experimented with infrared, but this will be a first for a restaurant. Powerful downdraft machines are promised to suck the usual smoke and cooking smells out through the floor.
This combination of sleek lounge and D.I.Y. grilling is the brainchild of the young Korean entertainment mogul J.Y. Park.
The nation’s top agricultural bureaucrat expects that the next big thing in the Korean wave, dubbed hallyu, could be Korean food, or “K-food,” which he says will follow K-pop in chalking up global popularity.
Minister for Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and Food Suh Kyu-yong projected during a recent interview with The Korea Times that 10 years should be enough for Korean cuisine to receive worldwide recognition.
Watch the MV of K-Food Party by Wondergirls, the Ambassador of Korean Agriculture Food Export: