Saturday, May 25, 2013

Cooking Adventures: Dooboo Kimchi (두부김치)

Dooboo kimchi (literally tofu kimchi) is a hearty side dish that is usually served with soju.  This dish consists of firm tofu on a plate bordering cooked kimchi, and variations include meat mixed within the kimchi.  Like American cheese and crackers, place a bite of kimchi on a slice of tofu and enjoy!

I am by no means a cook, so please don't take my improvised recipe to heart.  Honestly this is only my second time independently cooking (along with my Korean friend, my co-cook) so I'm still learning!  This dish is very improvised because we bought our ingredients at an American market and loosely used a homemade recipe based on my friend's memory.  Here are the steps we took to make dooboo kimchi! 

Our Ingredients:
  • Cooking oil
  • 1 boneless pork chop*
  • 1 small package of kimchi
  • 1 bok choy**
  • 1 package of firm tofu
Our Tools:
  • Knife
  • Chopsticks
  • Pan
1) Preparation: Washing and chop the bok choy into small square chunks.  Chop the pork into small cubes and remove any fat.  Cut the tofu into 6x2 (or cut more for thinner slices).
2) Put the oil in the pan and turn on the stove to medium heat.  Cook the chopped pork and kimchi together, mixing the two ingredients to bring flavor to the meat.  
3) Gradually add the choy.  Make sure all of the pork is thoroughly cooked.
4) Once the pork is completely cooked and the kimchi's flavor is evenly dispersed to the pork and choy, place this in the center of the serving plate.
5) ***Place the tofu slices into the pan and cook until golden brown.  Flip the tofu after several minutes (check to see if the bottom is golden brown or to your desire) and cook the other side.
 6) Layer the tofu slices around the parameter of the plate, encircling the medley in the center.
And, voila!  The final result.  Our total time cooking was approximately half an hour.  Though the end result looks fancy for an average dinner, it's pretty easy and quick to make.  Of course, this dish is our own variation and doesn't seem as authentic as it could have been (for example, subbing bok choy for green onions).  Despite being beginner cooks (this really is our second time cooking), our meal turned out to be very successful!

*Other meats work as well.
**Typically chopped green onion is supposed to be sprinkled on top, but we only had bok choy and therefore used it as a replacement for green onion.
***I suggest washing the pan to remove burnt residue.  We didn't wash the pan before cooking the tofu, and therefore the tofu had lots of burnt flakes on it.

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