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From Vegas to New York: Our 10 Favorite Holiday Hot Chocolate Experiences

From Vegas to New York: Our 10 Favorite Holiday Hot Chocolate Experiences

Creamy, sweet, savory and sometimes even spicy, hot chocolate is an indulgent staple of the winter holiday season. We rounded up the most memorable hot chocolate experiences and photo-worthy displays, because in the era of Instagram, you enjoy first with the eyes and then with the other senses.

Hot Choc Doc, Chicago (seen above)

To combat Chicago’s infamous winter weather, the Four Seasons has installed a roving “Hot Choc Doc” who is on call to bring hot chocolate and every conceivable topping right to guests’ rooms. And for the adults who might say, “Oh, that’s cute, but none for me,” think twice: There’s an adults-only section of that cart, stocked with butternut rum and schnapps.

Photo Courtesy of Revere Hotel

Pop It Like It’s Hot, Boston

A pop-up hot chocolate bar for charity, with a clever name that brings back youthful memories…well played, Revere Hotel! Revere chef Bader Ali has created gourmet Taza cocoa concoctions, like Nutella with Homemade Banana Whipped Cream, and in the holiday spirit, all drinks are priced at what you want to pay — “donations encouraged," because proceeds go to a local children’s charity. Visit this pop-up every Friday from 3-6 p.m. before it closes down on December 27.

Photo Courtesy of The Rittenhouse

Rittenhouse, Philadelphia

Step right up and get your hot chocolate with all the fixings! The Rittenhouse has set up a hot chocolate station in their lobby, and everyone’s welcome to come in for cocoa — not just hotel guests. The doormen even hand out roast chestnuts and apple cider is on offer too. Sorry, teddy bear not included…but if you want one, inquire for seating at the Teddy Bear Tea.

Photo Credit: Steve Hill

Bourbon Hot Chocolate, Manhattan’s Lower East Side

Hot chocolate, a dash of Maker’s Mark, and a chocolate chip cookie, fresh-baked in-house and still warm from the oven. It’s the grown-up holiday version of afternoon milk and cookies — and a fall menu addition at Blue Ribbon Beer Garden. If you’re up for it, you can sit on the heated patio and watch the Lower East Side holiday crowds.

Photo Courtesy of Four Seasons

Green Chile Hot Chocolate, Santa Fe

Yes, some put green chile in absolutely everything, including hot chocolate — and why not? If the point of the beverage is to warm you up, a subtle dash of chile ups the heat and balances out the chocolate’s sweetness. This is actually New Mexico’s version on the traditional Mexican hot chocolate recipe that uses chipotle. Roasted ground green chile imparts a toasty, spicy, unique flavor. If you want the most elegant presentation in town, look to Terra restaurant in the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado.

Photo Courtesy of Four Seasons

Xocolatl, Punta Mita

Speaking of traditional Mexican hot chocolate, the Four Seasons property in Punta Mita, Riviera Nayarit has one of the most elaborate and artistic presentations. Drinkable chocolate has historic and cultural implications in the region, which was the first to cultivate cacao. Guests learn a little bit about that and taste multiple kinds of chocolate, including Azteca and Champurrado.

Photo Credit: Matthew Wexler

Hot Chocolate Buffet, Deer Valley

The DIY hot chocolate bars at the St. Regis Deer Valley, Utah are the delight of all who encounter them. The main one that the resort sets up is in a public area special for the holidays, and if you're fortunate enough to be staying on-property, you can request a personal sized one all to yourself. Delivered by the “hot chocolate butler,” it comes with steamed milk, pastilles of dark, milk and white chocolate, syrups, various garnishes...oh, and maybe Bailey’s.

Photo Credit: Joao Rodrigues

Peanut Butter Frrrozen Hot Chocolate, Boca Raton

For all those who have had Frrrozen Hot Chocolate at the flagship Serenity 3 location in Manhattan, here’s great news — there’s an outpost of the famous dining spot at Boca Raton Resort & Club in Miami. It serves all the awesome flavors that the New York branch does, and you pretty much never have to wait for a table. You can even get yours to go and enjoy the surreal experience of watching people ice skate (at the Pink Rink!) and enjoying holiday treats while it’s 75 degrees out.

Photo Courtesy of St. Regis

Hot Chocolate With Santa & at Astor Holiday Ice Rink, Atlanta

Take your pick of traditions at the St. Regis in Atlanta, where hot chocolate is available at Astor Holiday Ice Rink or as part of the afternoon Children’s Tea with Santa. Whether your kids like to zoom around on the ice or get dressed up and show off their table manners, the beverage choice will be the same. And it will no doubt involve whipped cream and sprinkles.

Photo Credit: Craig Gilbert

RHUMBAR Naughty Girl Scout, Las Vegas

Good luck finding something as wholesome as hot cocoa in Las Vegas, where the holidays bring booze-infused sippers named after questionable Halloween costumes. Available inside the Mirage Hotel & Casino, this is a pretty classic holiday concoction - once you get past the provocative name, of course. It's made with Bailey’s Mint Chocolate, peppermint schnapps, coffee, chocolate syrup and an Andes mint garnish.

Photo Courtesy of Crave

Drinkable Chocolate Truffles, Anywhere

For all of you wondering, "What’s the easiest way to get this at home?" — well, there are a ton of gourmet cocoa mixes on the market today, from Norman Love and Taza to Christopher Elbow. For an easy-to-prepare “grown-up” recipe, double down on the good stuff with Crave liqueur (available in Chocolate Truffle, Chocolate Cherry, Chocolate Mint or Chocolate Chili) mixed with your favorite drinking chocolate.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.


10 Korean Comfort Foods You Have to Try

Chinese and Japanese cuisine has been a part of America’s culinary scene for decades but in recent years Korean food has become increasingly popular with the rise in Korean-American communities across the U.S. According to recent statistics, New York, Maryland, Virginia, California, New Jersey and Georgia are among those with the most Korean-American residents. In fact, one of the largest Korean-American communities is situated just outside Atlanta in Gwinnett, which has earned the nickname “Seoul of the South.”

The organization Explore Gwinnett recently invited me to take their “Seoul of the South” tour and I was able to sample a wide range of Korean dishes and snacks from such popular local restaurants and cafes as The Stone Grill, Honey Pig, Suwanee Chicken and Pizza and Arte 3. Here are some of the best and most flavorful dishes which can be found in most traditional Korean restaurants.

Steamed Dumplings

These Korean-style steamed dumplings usually have a filling of meat (beef & pork) and minced vegetables (cabbage, carrots, onions, etc.) but other variations include tofu or shrimp.

Dumplings are a common appetizer or side dish in most Asian restaurants but the Korean version is called jjin mandu and is usually filled with a meat mixture (pork and beef though some versions feature shrimp), onions, cabbage, carrots, mung bean noodles or other complementary ingredients. They can be steamed, boiled or fried and are usually served with a variety of sweet, spicy and savory sauces for dipping. The result is super soft, juicy pillows of flavor.

Cheese Deung-galbi (Baby Back Ribs with cheese sauce)

Like most Korean barbecue dishes, this one is prepared on a grill at your table and the sticky glazed baby back ribs are cooked along with shredded cheese, chopped peppers and corn. The cheese and vegetables break down into a fondue sauce while the ribs are grilled and they are served together as one dish. The browned and crisp cheese provides a nice contrast to the taste and texture of the barbecued ribs.

Gaeranjim (Steamed Egg Casserole)

It might look like a souffle but this very simple combination of eggs and water (or broth) whisked together and steamed with some chopped vegetables like green onions or red pepper flakes has a creamier and slightly more dense consistency. It makes a tasty accompaniment to Korean barbecue but is also fine as a side dish.

How does this differ from traditional Southern fried chicken? For one thing, the chicken are is seasoned or marinated prior to cooking. Also, chickens in Korea are smaller in size than those in the U.S. so chefs tend to cook the whole bird in a light batter that becomes super crispy when fried. The chicken is then chopped into individual pieces for serving though some may lightly brush the pieces with a hot pepper sauce or sweet garlic-soy glaze for added flavor that doesn’t affect the texture of the crunchy coating. Addictive stuff.

Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Belly)

Pork belly is somewhat similar to bacon except that it is a much thicker cut (the Korean name means “three layered flesh”) and is brought to your table with scissors and tongs for you to cut up into smaller pieces and grill the meat in its own fat. You are also served other vegetables for grilling (sliced onions, mushrooms, kimchi). Upon completion you wrap bite size pieces of the pork belly and cooked vegetables in lettuce leaves and top with a preferred sauce either gireumjang (sesame oil, black pepper and salt) or smashing (soybean paste, sesame oil, hot pepper paste). It might not be low calorie but it is the ultimate comfort food.

Almost every culture in the world has their own approach to pizza-making and Korean-Americans like to make their pies with a layer of scorched rice and a layer of dough which gives it a flat, crepe-like appearance. Toppings can vary from standard items like mushrooms and pepperoni to the more atypical variations of sweet potato, bulgogi (marinated beef) or seafood with a sauce layer of gochujang (spicy fermented soybean and chili paste), tomato sauce or wasabi-ranch dressing.

Grilled Kimchi

Kimchi, napa cabbage that has been marinated and pickled, is a popular condiment and side dish at most meals in Korean-American cuisine.

Most sushi aficionados are familiar with kimchi but for Koreans it is a regular feature on the dinner table, either as a side dish or an ingredient in the main course. Most kimchi is made from napa cabbage that has been fermented in red pepper, garlic, ginger, sugar and fish sauce but it can also be made from daikon radish or scallions. You could make a meal of it with a bowl of rice or enjoy it grilled along with your favorite meat or seafood.

This popular beverage is made from a multigrain powder of rice, barley and other roasted and dried grains. You can mix it with water and drink it hot or add milk instead and create a variation on the latte. Misutgaru can also be sweetened with honey and served up as a smoothie. It is a nutritious, caffeine-fee beverage with a full-bodied, nutty flavor and a wonderful alternative to coffee.

Waffle with Fruit and Vanilla Cream

A popular Korean dessert and snack are waffles with fresh fruit and ice cream or flavored cream topped with a sweet sauce of honey syrup, caramel or chocolate.

Waffle with Fruit and Cream

In the U.S. waffles are primarily a breakfast food but for Korean-Americans waffles are a popular dessert/street food that is usually combined with fresh sliced fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream (or ice cream) with a topping of honey syrup or caramel or chocolate sauce. It pairs particularly well with a misutgaru latte.

Sweet Red Bean Paste Cookies

Bungeoppang is a Korean-American bakery favorite that consists of fish-shaped cookies filled with sweet red bean paste.

Bungeoppang (Red Bean Paste Cookies)

Sweet red bean paste is used in a lot of Asian pastries but it is featured prominently in these delightful fish-shaped cookies which are a popular treat in Korean culture. Not overly sweet, these cookies are crisp on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Try them with your favorite hot tea.