Be My Korean Valentine

Am I the only one who likes to watch Olympic medal ceremonies for the first time because these gals are so cute?

 Where can I buy one of these robes?

Where can I buy one of these robes?

I'm beginning to think South Korea should always host the Winter Olympics. Why? Because, windy weather on the slopes aside, they do everything so nicely. I love the little groups of Korean girls in purple who applaud the events (even curling, for Pete's sake), sponge down the ice while the Zamboni cruises around, and pick up any bouquets and teddy bears that were hurled. I love the medal-ceremony ladies, as I mentioned. I even love the segments on Korean food because Korean food is awesome. I love how everyone has been bundled up because, unlike in Sochi, it's actually been freezing.

And then, of course, there's Chloe Kim, whom both Americans and South Koreans happily claim.

 (Kirill Kudryavtsev / AFP/Getty Images)

(Kirill Kudryavtsev / AFP/Getty Images)

So, in honor of both South Korea and America, here are two recipes we've cooked in our house.

Bulgogi (Korean Stirfry from Skagit River Ranch)

1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp sesame oil
salt to taste
3 Tbsp sugar or honey
1 bunch scallions, cut in 1" pieces
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 Tbsp Mirin or sherry
1 tsp red pepper flakes, or more, to taste
1 lbs thinly sliced beef for stir-fry
1 Tbsp peanut or vegetable oil.

Mix soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, salt, scallions, garlic, wine, and red pepper flakes in medium bowl or Ziploc bag. Add beef and marinate at least one hour or up to overnight.

Bring to room temperature. Stir fry over medium-high in the peanut oil until the meat is browned but not overcooked! This might be as little as a minute. Don't overcrowd the pan--do it in batches, if necessary. Serve with rice and lots of seasonal vegetables.

And then, on a completely different note, we had chicken soft tacos last night, with roasted chicken from Korean-American Chungah Rhee's new cookbook (and blog) Damn Delicious. (I had to get over the fact that I thought the titles of both should be "Damned Delicious," in order to be grammatical, but whatever. The food is good.)

cookbook (1).jpg

All-Purpose Chicken

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in 1/2" strips
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400F. Place chicken in a single layer on a baking sheet and toss with all other ingredients. Bake 15-18 minutes, or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center. Serve immediately or refrigerate or freeze.

Enjoy, and let's hope our Speed Skating team gets out of its doldrums!