Korean home food


What do Koreans normally eat?
한국 사람들은 보통 뭐 먹어요?

 Koreans eat 밥(rice) for three meals, you can say Koreans can’t live without rice.  How can you eat rice for every meal?  My friend asked me once.  Yes, we can because there are lots of different 반찬(side dishes).

Because a lot of people(workers) eat out for lunch, we can have some side dishes for breakfast and add a 찌개(stew) or (soup) with the same or different side dishes for dinner.

This is my normal 점심(lunch), but sometimes I eat this for 아침(breakfast) or 저녁(dinner).  I had 시금치나물(seasoned spinach), 두부부침(fried tofu), 어묵조림(fried fishcake), 파래무침(seasoned seaweed) and 오징어채(dried squid) with my rice for lunch.

It is very healthy and light. IMG_1023.JPG


You will wonder,

Where is 김치(Kimch)?
김치가 떨어졌어요. Well, I have run out of Kimchi.

I haven’t been to the 한국슈퍼마켓(Korean market) recently.

My precious Kimchi!!!!

My favorite side dish is 김(seaweed).

What is yours?

오이 김치 Cucumber Kimchi


*My favorite Kimchi is cucumber Kimchi, especially in the summer.

Few months ago, I bought a bag of cucumbers from a Korean market and made my first cucumber Kimchi.  It was very easy!!!!!


You need,

1. cucumbers  오이 

2. chives  부추

3. red pepper flakes 고춧가루 (Korean red pepper powder)

4. anchovy sauce or shrimp sauce  멸치액젓 또는 새우젓 (Korean anchovy sauce)

5. garlic, onions, green onions, carrots, sugar, salt  마늘, 양파, 파, 당근, 설탕, 소금


1. Cut cucumbers 2.5 ~ 3 inches and cut each piece like the picture. BUT, don’t cut them all the way down, just cut 2/3 so you can put chives stuffing inside of each cucumber piece. IMG_1013.JPG


2. Boil water with lots of salt(I put two cups).

3. When it starts boiling, turn off the stove and put those little cucumbers into the hot water.


4. Wait one hour.

5. While you are waiting, you can make chives stuffing.  Cut chives 2 inches, slice onions and carrots.  And Mix veges with a cup of red pepper flakes, a big spoon of fish sauce, a big spoon of minced garlic, a small spoon of sugar and a small spoon of salt.  You can taste it now.  If you like spicy, you can put more red pepper flakes.




6. Rescue those cucumbers from salty hot water and drain the water.

7. Put the stuffing into each cucumber piece.  It is kinda BORING………

8. This is a very important part!!  Put them in a jar or a Tupperware, fill up the container as much as possible.  It is not good if there is lots of space.  Old Koreans used to put them into a jar and put a big rock on the top of the jar, so it can press cucumbers.





9. I left that Kimchi container outside for two days and then put it into refrigerator because I thought that would help the process of fermentation.  We do that for cabbage Kimchi!!!!  But my mom said I should have put it into refrigerator after I made that.  Anyway, you have to wait for few days.


It was delicious~~~~~~~~
Crunch, juicy, spicy, stinky(of course!) 

I eat them almost every meal right now.  Am I the happiest girl in the whole world?  🙂


두부김치 Tofu Kimchi

두부 김치 (Doo-bu Kimchi : Tofu Kimchi)

두부김치(Doo-bu Kimchi : Tofu Kimchi)

I make this dish all the time for the guests because it is SUPER EASY and Yummy!
집에 오는 손님을 위해서 제가 자주 만드는 음식이에요.  아주 쉽고 맛있어요.

1. Slice FIRM Tofu about a half inch and fry them both side for 10 mins. (I like CRISPY!!!!!)
두부를 썰고 양쪽을 10분 간 부쳐요.

2. Cut Kimchi as small pieces fry Kimchi with a little bit of sugar for 10 mins.
김치를 잘게 썰고 10분 간 볶아요.


***** Tip : If you don’t want to make your cutting board BLOODY RED, you can cut Kimchi with SCISSORS.
도마를 빨갛게 만들고 싶지 않으면, 가위를 쓰세요.

가위 scissors

My husband and I have this with 막걸리(Mahk-ggul-li : Korean milky rice wine). Mmmmmmm…
제 남편하고 저는 두부김치를 막걸리하고 같이 먹어요.

Honey!  Today’s dinner is 두부 김치~
여보! 오늘 저녁은 두부김치예요~

How to make Bibimbap?

I am a really lazy person, so I can follow long and complicated recipes.
So here I am. I am writing this for you who are like me. 🙂

0. Make rice. 밥을 해요.
1. Blanch spinach and bean sprouts. (Spinach for 30 sec, bean sprouts for 1min) 시금치와 숙주를 데쳐요. (시금치는 30초, 숙주는 1분)
2. Slice carrots. 당근은 채 썰어요.
3. Fry ground beef with Bulgogi sauce and put carrots into a pan. 다진 소고기를 불고기 양념과 함께 볶은 다음에 당근을 넣어요.
4. Put all of them in a big bowl and mix them with a spoon of Gochujang. 큰 대접에 모두 담고 고추장 한 숟갈을 넣어요.
5. Sesame oil and sesame seeds are important!!!! 참기름과 깨는 정말 중요해요!!!
6. Ah, i forgot about a fried egg. 앗, 계란 부치는 거 까먹었어요! ㅠ.ㅠ

** If you want to make it crispy, fry it up again with some vegetable oil. (I don’t have Dol-sott!!!!) 바삭하게 먹고 싶으면 식용유에 다시 한번 볶으세요.


맛있게 드세요!! Enjoy your meal!!

Do you know how to type Korean?


This is the Korean keyboard.  As you can see there are consonants on the green side, vowels on the pink side.  A Korean letter needs at least one consonant and one vowel.


This is ‘아’ as in ‘아빠(dad)’.  There is ‘ㅇ(consonant)’ and ‘ㅏ(vowel)’.  So when you write ‘아빠’, ‘D(ㅇ)+K(ㅏ)’   ‘SHIFT Q(ㅃ)+K(ㅏ)’

On you cell phone, there are two types of keyboard.  The one is the same as a computer keyboard, the other one is 10 keyboard type(mostly Samsung cell phones have this system).

10 key


There is only ‘ㅣ’, a ‘dot’  and  ‘ㅡ’ on the top of the keyboard.  These three symbols are based on King Sejong’s Hangeul vowel theory.   means ‘Earth‘, ‘dot‘ means ‘Sun‘ and ‘‘ means ‘Human‘. You can make any Korean vowels  with these three keys.  Let’s write single vowels.

1. ㅏ = ㅣ + dot

2. ㅓ = dot + ㅣ

3. ㅗ = dot + ㅡ

4. ㅜ = ㅡ + dot

5. ㅡ = ㅡ

6. ㅣ = ㅣ

7. ㅔ = dot + ㅣ+ㅣ

8. ㅐ = ㅣ+ dot  +ㅣ


How about ‘ㅘ’ ?  You are right!

dot + ㅡ + ㅣ+ dot

There are no double consonants such as ㄲ,ㄸ,ㅃ,ㅆ,ㅉ, right?  They are in the ㄱ,ㄷ,ㅂ,ㅅ,ㅈ keys.  If you press ‘ㄱ’  three times, ‘ㄲ’ will be shown.

Can you write in Korean with your cell phone or computer?  Please write some Korean whatever you want!

불고기 : how to make beef Bulgogi?

불고기 Bulgogi


불고기 (Bulgogi : 불 means fire, 고기 means meat) is my favorite Korean dish, so I make it almost once a week.  There are several 불고기, which are 소불고기(beef Bulgogi), 돼지불고기(pork Bulgogi) and 닭불고기(chicken Bulgogi).  Making Bulgogi is not that hard!

1. Buy thin slices of sirloin or prime cuts of beef. It needs to be REALLY REALLY THIN.  얇게 썬 등심을 사요.  아주 아주 얇아야 해요!

2. Buy Bulgogi sauce.  If you want to make the sauce, you can follow this recipe.  I am too lazy to make the sauce. 😛  Where to buy?  You can search ‘Bulgogi sauce’ on Amazon.  Which one is good?  There are all similar.  불고기 양념을 사요.  불고기 양념을 만들고 싶으면, 이 레시피를 따라하세요.  저는 너무 게을러서 소스를 못 만들어요. 😛  불고기 소스는 어디에서 살까요?  아마존에서 검색하세요.  어떤 게 좋을까요?  다 비슷해요. 🙂

3. Marinate beef with the sauce. ( I normally marinate for 1 hours.)  고기를 양념에 재워요. (저는 보통 한 시간 쯤 재워요)

4. Slice onions, green onions, mushrooms, Jalapeno and carrots. 양파, 파, 버섯, 고추, 당근을 채 썰어요.

5. Fry the marinated beef and veges together.  (put green onion at the end. )  채소와 고기를 넣고 같이 볶아요. (파는 제일 마지막에 넣어요)

6. I always put Korean vermicelli noodles at the end.  (You should soak the noodles in water at least 40 mins in advance. )  저는 항상 당면을 마지막에 넣어요.  (최소 한 시간 전에 당면을 물에 불려야 해요)



Isn’t it easy?  오늘 저녁에 불고기 먹을 거예요? Are you going to have Bulgogi tonight?



Do Koreans eat Kimchi everyday?

Do Koreans eat Kimchi everyday?


Yes, we do!  We eat them for every meal!  Kimchi is the most important side dish for a meal.  The most famous Kimchi is cabbage Kimchi(배추김치), but there are lots of different Kimchis such as radish Kimchi(깍두기), water Kimchi(물김치), cucumber Kimchi(오이김치), mustard leaves Kimchi(갓김치).  There are over 200 kinds of Kimchi in Korea.

배추김치 Cabbage Kimchi


깍두기 Radish Kimchi
물김치 Water Kimchi

Sometimes, I just eat several kinds of Kimchi and rice without other side dishes for my meals.

We normally make Kimchi in the winter, because cabbages are good in the winter. We say this “김장하다(to make Kimchi)” or “김치를 담그다(to make Kimchi)”.  If there are 4 people in a family, they will buy about 40 cabbages when they make Kimchi.

It is not an easy process!  We cut cabbages in a half or in a quarter and put them into a salt water for 6 hours.  Then, take them out and drain them.  While the cabbages are drained, we make 김치 속(Kimchi seasoning) with radish, anchovy sauce, red pepper powder, garlic, ginger, green onion and a little bit of sugar.  And then put the seasoning into the cabbage for every leaf.

Most Korean families recently have a Kimchi refrigerator(김치 냉장고) which keeps the certain temperature and contains a lot of Kimchi.  Yes, we have two refrigerators.  Because Kimchi is fermenting, it STINKS!!!!!  So you don’t want to open your refrigerator too often if there is a jar of Kimchi in your refrigerator. 🙂


I usually make Kimchi fried rice(김치볶음밥).  It is very easy!  You can make it too!

1. Cut Kimchi in small pieces and fry 5 mins with a little bit of oil.

2. If you want, you can put onions or mushrooms and fry them with Kimchi.

3. Fry an egg on an another pan. ( I usually scramble my egg and mix with fried Kimchi because I don’t want to do dishes!!)

4. Put a bowl of rice and pour some Kimchi juice or Gochu-jang(red pepper sauce).

5. Fry them until they gets crispy!!!

김치볶음밥 Kimchi fried rice


Are you ready?



초복, 중복, 말복 The hottest days!!!

초복(Chobok:初伏), 중복(Joongbok:中伏), 말복(Mahlbok:末伏) are known for three hottest days of the lunar calendar and we call these days 삼복(三伏) which means three hottest days in Korean.   means ‘beginning’, means ‘middle’ and means ‘end’, so 초복 is ‘the beginning of a hot summer’, 중복 is ‘the middle of a hot summer’ and ‘말복’ is ‘the end of a hot summer.

on 복날[봉날](the day of 초복, 중복 or 말복), we usually eat 삼계탕(Sam-gye-tang:hot chicken Ginseng soup) or 초계탕(Cho-gye-tang:cold chicken soup).  A HOT SOUP on a HOT DAY????   It sounds crazy, but it is a scientific fact.  When you eat hot food, you will sweat a lot.  After you sweat, your body temperature drops, so your body becomes cool!  There is a saying that explains this idea, which is 이열치열(Fight fire with fire:以熱治熱).

삼계탕 Sam-gye-tang


초복 is 7/16, 중복 is 7/27 and 말복 is 8/16 in 2016.

Let’s go eat 삼계탕 or 초계탕!!!


초계탕 Cho-gye-tang

제사 The Commemorative Ceremony

The commemorative ceremony is one of the most important rites for Korean family.  It usually takes 30 mins to an hour, but it depends on family members.

<The order of the ceremonial food>
img from : http://www.naver.com

We prepare the best food for them because we believe that spirits really come to have the food.  There are usually apples, pears, meat, soup, rice, fish, chestnuts and jujubes etc, but it depends on family.  One of the funny thing is that after the ceremony, we take a little of every food and take them outside for stranger spirits(??) who don’t have family to have a ceremony for them.  Traditionally only men can perform the commemorative ceremony, but my family women also join the ceremony.

There are three kinds of the ceremony.

1. 제사[Jesa] is usually for dead people who were in your family such as great grand parents, grand parents, parents or brother and sister. It is held every year at night on the day when they died, so it is particularly for a person.  My family have four ceremonies per year for my great grand parents and grand parents.

2. 차례[Chare] is for ancestors including family members who died, but it is held in the early morning on Seollal and Choosuk which are New year’s day(January 1st of the Lunar Calendar) and Thanksgiving day(August 15th of the Lunar Calendar).  This is for thanking to ancestors to let us have a great year and for hoping that they take care of us.  The food will be similar to 제사, however we put ‘떡국(rice cake soup)’ on Seollal.



3. 고사[Gosa] is held on the day when people start their business, when they move to a new house, when they buy a new car or when farmers start harvesting.  It can be held in the morning, afternoon or night.  The food is mostly the same as other ceremony, but there is one more thing which is “PIG HEAD”.  In Korea, pigs mean ‘fortune’ or ‘wealth’, so people put a pig head as a sacrificial offering to hope that ancestors protect them from the bad luck and the evil spirit.

mg from : http://blog.naver.com/jnjshop/30154191034

Korean Holidays

2016 holidays in Korea


Koreans still use Sun calendar and Lunar calendar. Most Korean holidays are on the Sun calendar, however we(Koreans) still celebrate the two biggest holidays(Seollal and Chuseok) with the Lunar calendar.  Because these days are a day off or a few days off at work and school, so we call them ‘공휴일(day off)’ and ‘연휴(a few days off)’.

Here are a list of holidays and what we do on those days.

1/1 설날 (양력설  New year’s day on the Solar calendar) – We eat 떡국(rice cake soup) and celebrate a new year.

2/7~2/10설날(음력설 New year’s day on the Lunar calendar) – It is the biggest holiday!!! It is January 1st on the Lunar calendar, so the date changes every year on the Solar calendar. People go to their hometown and meet their parents and families on this day. A day before 설날, we get together to prepare food for the early morning ceremony on 설날, which is for our ancestors. We eat 떡국(rice cake soup) after the ceremony and we play traditional games like 윷놀이(four sticks). For more information about 설날, click here.

3/1  삼일절 (Independent movement day) – It occurred on March 1st in 1919 during the Japanese colonial occupation period. On this day, there are lots of places have reenactment performances. You can learn more about 삼일절 through this website.

5/5 어린이날 (Children’s day) – Kids love it, parents hate it. 🙂 A lot of people go to amusement parks or go on a picnic on this day.

5/14 석가탄신일 (Buddha’s birthday) – It is April 8th on the Lunar calendar, so the date changes every year. Buddhism is one of the biggest religions in Korea. Buddhists go to a temple to celebrate Buddha’s birthday.

6/6 현충일 (Memorial day) – It is the day to commemorate people who fought for Korea. The government holds a ceremony at the National Cemetery in Seoul.

8/15 광복절 (Independence day) – It is the day that we found our freedom back from Japanese colonial rule.

9/14~9/16 추석(Chuseok, Full moon holiday) – It is August 15th on the Lunar calendar, so the date changes every year. Chuseok is the second biggest holiday for Koreans. We go to our parents house to celebrate it and eat a lot of food. The day before Chuseok, families get together to prepare food for a morning ceremony on Chuseok. Food for Chuseok, 송편(pine tree flavor rice cake) is the most famous food for this day.

10/3 개천절 (National Foundation Day) – National Foundation day is celebrating for the day that Dan-goon Jo-seon is established for 4348 years ago.

10/9 한글날 (Hangeul Day) – It is the day to celebrate Hangeul that was created by Sejong the Great in 1443.

12/25 크리스마스 (Christmas) – A lot of people celebrate Christmas even though they are not Christians. Koreans somehow celebrate it as Valentine’s day, so a lot of couples eat out on this day. Some restaurants change their prices twice as much as original prices. Streets are full of people who hang out with their friends. It is fun, but I don’t recommend you to go to a busy street because there are lots of people who are drunk.


Some holidays are not a day off, but very important for us, which are

5/8 어버이 날 (Parents day) – It is the day to appreciate our parents. On this day, we send carnations and gifts to our parents or eat a nice meal with them.

5/15 스승의 날 (Teacher’s day) – We express appreciation to our teachers on this day by sending cards and gifts to our teachers. 스승 is formal word for teacher.


* 설날 Seollal (lunar calendar), 추석(Chuseok) and 석가탄신일(Buddha’s birthday) change every year because it is on the lunar calendar.


* My favorite holiday is Seollal and Chooseok because there are lots of food and we can take three days off to see our family and friends!