Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Ranger Ajosshi

Earlier this month I had a chance to meet up with the one and only Qi Ranger for his Your Neck Of The Woods video series. We spent a very pleasant afternoon gorging ourselves at the OKitchen and then wandering around the neighbourhood. Watch it if you dare (WARNING - contains me).


Soupy Dumplings

I've been a little lax on posting this month. Too many things to do and not enough energy to blog about them. Then again I'm not quite sure how interesting my ramblings on the finer points of subtitle formatting  and children's theatre would be to you all.

It has been a funny old year. I've gone from being a full time performer to a freelance writer/director in the past eight months. The children's book series I've been writing is into the illustration stage, so I get to marvel with delight at how my ideas are being transformed on the page and in the next couple of months I'll be working with a composer on the songs for the books. It's all very, very new and all very, very exciting. I've got other projects lined up for next year, but they're still under wraps, at least until contracts are signed and announcements are made.

In other news I should be filming a documentary with KBS in the coming weeks. They want to bring together a group of foreigners to eat Korean food around the peninsula. I'm not quite sure what to expect or where exactly we'll be going, but it'll be fun exploring the country with a few fellow foreign foodies.

As the year winds down I'm looking forward to some robust Korean cuisine. Soups, stews and teas to warm the stomach and the spirit.

UPDATE: Looks like I'm dropping out of the KBS documentary. Too many schedule clashes and not enough money to turn my life upside down... Ah well, it gives me more time for Christmas shopping and watching Tintin.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Blurry Heavenly Goodness

I've been rushed off my feet these past couple of weeks doing many things paid and unpaid that allow me to survive. The rest of my adventures in Jeju are coming, but first a short detour into deliciousness.

Dinner at the OKitchen in Itaewon is always a delight and with my father arriving in Seoul for a few days was a good excuse to pay a visit...

Blurry Heavenly Goodness

The Seafood Plate:

Top row left to right - herring, mackerel, flatfish ceviche (with lime and coriander).
Centre row left to right - crispy gizzard shad skin, oyster, sea squirt.
Bottom row left to right - flatfish, pacific saury with seaweed, grey mullet with schezuan pepper.

The seafood plate at the OKitchen is always a delight. There are old favourites that often appear alongside exciting seasonal oddities. The flatfish ceviche and the crispy gizzard shad skin are my favourites, though the oyster was highly praised by my dining companions.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

Beef tongue with assorted pickles and a jeotgal dressing.

The thin strip of tongue mixed with the radishy fermented dressing was tasty, but nothing compared to the small circle of confit tongue topped with mustard seeds. Heavenly mustardy fatty goodness.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

Goat cheese and sweet pumpkin tart with three citrus dressing.

Garnished with a gorgeous radish from the OKitchen farm, this cinnamon scented slice of tart was perfectly pared with a lemon, orange and grapefruit dressing.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

Potato gnocchi with pesto.

Simple, tasty, chewy parcels of potato goodness lathered in pesto and sprinkled with cheese. Perfect for a cold November night.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

Bayleaf sorbet.

The OKitchen refuses to rest on its laurels, producing a light and sweet palate cleanser.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

Pork belly confit with persimmon (half dried, grilled and gastric), parsnip purée.

The star of the show. I'm not sure why more people aren't doing this. Pork and persimmon are a match made in heaven. Plus the OKitchen is possibly the only place in Korea that offers parsnip in any way, shape or form.

 Blurry Heavenly Goodness

A trio of desserts.

All magnificent, with special praise going to the omija sorbet. These photos may be blurry, but the food, as always, was heavenly. OKitchen remains my favourite restaurant in Seoul and gives incredible quality and variety for ridiculously cheap prices. Visit their website here.