A friend shares a song with me;
My brain doesn't register its sound.
It's something new and fresh;
As I listen further- I want to find out more about the artist that created it, so I dig.
You'll be doing double takes, when you see Jamie Auld's portrayal of Madonna in this documentary by Guy Guido.
The documentary covers her struggles during her early years in New York City. The documentary focuses on her relationship with Dan Gilroy and how he introduces her to music. They form the band, the Breakfast Club, along with his brother Ed and one other member. Madonna becomes the drummer of the band and starts writing music.
To be the wife of the eldest son in a Korean family is a life sentence of domestic labor, above and beyond the wives of lesser ranked sons.
It’s not a role to be taken lightly.
The eldest son’s house is where all of the family events take place.
One of the responsibilities of the eldest son is to hold Jesa on the death anniversary for generations of elders.
This tradition of honoring the dead includes a huge feast, which the wife of the eldest son is expected to prepare.
As a child, I just remember feeling different for having these customs. What would people think if they found out? What did our neighbors think when we propped the door open to let the spirits in?
Jesa was also a huge burden for my mother to do all of the cooking. Other members of the family would often arrive when the preparation was complete.
It just seemed like an unnecessary chore.
But my father took Jesa very seriously.
He is the only son of the family and he fully embraces his eldest son responsibilities without hesitation.
Normally a very jovial father, he’d become solemn, as he’d peel the chestnuts and carve the boiled eggs.
Jesa was around a dozen times a year (including Charae- which has a different name because it is not during the death anniversaries but during the holidays).
Some months, there would be overlap and my mother would have to cook two feasts.
I have been a part of almost a hundred Jesa's in my lifetime.
And all the while, I thought we were sacrificing something of ourselves to honor the dead. Taking time out of our busy lives to remember them. An inconvenience. But in actuality, we were the beneficiaries of the tradition.
The wisdom of our ancestors, that created the tradition, only dawned on me recently.
If left to our own devices, how many of us would come together as a family to share a meal? Or remember ancestors that have passed?
Jesa, is for the living. For the living to remember to live and appreciate family.
All those Jesa memories of food and family- they have become a part of me.
revisiting some of the posts gone by
friday, september 8, 2017 - fung shing, montreal, quebec, canada
the restaurant owner goes out for a smoke
the air is cool and crisp
but in summer
he is relaxed and reflective
it is the hour before the dinner rush
he has been doing this,
as long as the 80's chairs have been here
the windows are foggy
the seal broken
the venetian blinds,
outline the frame of my vision
the gates of chinatown
the waiter checks his phone before going to the table to take their order
it's his girlfriend
she'd like to go to the movies tonight
the customer looks behind her back,
to see where her tea is
she says- a romantic comedy
he can do that
he will watch it for her,
7 more hours until he gets off
he really like this one
she is different from the others
she likes her men manly
last of the macho-loving women left in this world
so many songs...
wherever i go
whatever i do
click on icon above for link to the playlist on applemusic
who is kimchipapi?
kimchipapi, the chef and owner of kimchipapi kitchen, is also my brother joon
before he became kimchipapi,
we played house,
the three of us-
jinnie, me and joon
we came after each other with knives,
when the fighting became really impassioned
then we’d hug it out
and eat neapolitan ice cream
out of a gallon tub
i saw him falling in love with the restaurant business during his high school days,
when he’d bus tables at our parent’s restaurant and i’d work as hostess
the hustle and bustle
the tastes and aromas
and then he started cooking
little things here and there
and the rest is happening right before our eyes
at his first restaurant kimchipapi kitchen
the one year anniversary is today
and i can’t be prouder
he’s been battling it out in the trenches-
blood, sweat and tears
during construction to now
but it’s all worth it to him,
when people come in to enjoy his food
the food he has created,
by tasting and testing until he couldn’t taste any more
happy one year, joon!
81 Harvard Ave
Allston, MA 02134
on Instagram @kimchipapiktchn
Where would I be without Shazam?
I'd be without titles of songs,
names of artists,
forever yearning to hear the song,
I heard by chance,
What a sad predicament...
Shazam has allowed me to broaden my range of listening, by allowing me to have the titles of songs and names of artists of music I’ve heard in random places.
Many of my discoveries are at cafes and restaurants. Sometimes it's a song playing on a TV show.
One time it was a song blasting out of a car on the streets of LA.
Inevitably, I would be lost without my Shazam.
Shazam has been acquired by Apple last year for $400m. And since the acquisition, the two apps have become woven into one another. Making the songs found on Shazam seamlessly accessible on Apple Music.
Shazam was founded in 1999 by Christ Barton, Philip Inghelbrecht, Dhiraj Mukherjee and Avery Wang.
Going beyond the lattes & cappuccinos, there are so many other variations of espresso drinks now available.
Here are a few I have tried recently:
The Affogato: shot of espresso with vanilla ice cream.
The Cortado: shot of espresso with steamed milk.
The Gibraltar: shot of espresso with steamed milk, served in a Gibraltar glass. Just enough milk to balance out the acidity- much like the Cortado.
The foomu27 Podcast | episode 14 | The Conclusion of the Getting to Know You Series: Bob Dylan | Coming Soon
it's been 22 days since my last podcast. there are a ton of reason it's taken me this long to come back but all that matters is that- i'm here, at the exact time and place i want to be.
thanks for listening.
click the link below:
CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP
up until now, i've been playing it safe; i've only been using ingredients that have been familiar to me- mostly korean ingredients that i grew up on. but as i walked down the produce aisle, i saw the freshest looking carrots and celery, lined up side-by-side, and thought- i must make chicken noodle soup.
the smallest thing can get me inspired; and when this happens, i have to see it to completion.
i knew cooking chicken noodle soup would require me to come out of my comfort zone and use herbs.
and i was ready.
if i want to broaden my repertoire of food i can cook, i can’t not learn how to use herbs.
so i looked up a few recipes to see what herbs were used for chicken noodle soup and i was surprised to see how much it varied from recipe to recipe. one even said that you can put an herb of your choice.
however, i was looking for a specific flavor- the familiar flavor of a classic chicken noodle soup you can get at a new york diner.
i needed to use thyme.
i also purchased some bay leaves.
the soup wasn't the greatest but i finally cooked with herbs (the non-typically asian kind)!
i didn't get lauren's stamp of approval but i don't think it was due to the misuse of the herbs. it just lacked overall flavor- which had more to do with the lack of salt.
and i'd definitely use fresh thyme next time. the dry thyme didn't soften.
looking forward to the next herb challenge.
i walk alone
through these empty streets
all i remember
is a vision of you
i think alone in this
all i recall
is a memory of you
for full 2018 playlist on apple music click below:
growing up eating fresh mandoo (korean dumplings) is like- having hulu (google sophia vergara hulu commercial)- you can never go back to store bought.
unable to satisfy the void of my mandoo past, i decided to make my own. i've updated it with the use of cilantro & chicken but all the fundamentals have stayed the same. fresh ingredients- lovingly made by hand.
Ingredients for the Filling:
Add all ingredients for the filling into a large bowl and combine with your hands.
Take one dumpling wrapper and lightly dip half of one side in the egg wash.
Fill a tablespoon of filling in the middle.
Fold the wrapper in half, making sure to line up the egg washed half with the other half.
Gently seal the edges pushing downward, removing any air.
Bring large pot of water with a tablespoon of vegetable oil to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium.
Stir the water, as you place the dumpling individually, in batches of 10.
Cook for 3 minutes or when the dumplings floats.
Remove gently with a strainer.
Enjoy as is or dip in light soy sauce.
I finally did it. I made kimchi.
It actually tastes good. And this is not my opinion alone, but shared by others who have tasted it.
There are so many variables and stages of the process that could go wrong. The ingredients could suck, the sauce imperfect, the brining insufficient, the fermentation interrupted by air or temperature... However, the stars were aligned and I was blessed by the kimchi gods. I have myself- a delicious bottle of kimchi.
MY RECIPE for KIMCHI
3 medium- large Napa cabbage
¾ cup coarse sea salt
2 tablespoons of sweet rice flour
4 x 4 sheet of kombu
1 dried shiitake mushroom
1 tablespoon of sugar
1 lb of Korean radish
1 cup of chopped green onion
½ cup of garlic
2 teaspoons of ginger
1 Korean pear
½ cup of fish sauce
½ cup of fermented baby shrimp
2 cups of Korean red pepper flake
Brining the cabbage:
Cut cabbage into quarter wedges. In a large basin put 10 cups of water and ¼ cup of salt. Dissolve the salt before submerging the cabbage in the salted water. Leave for 30 minutes.
Remove the cabbage from the basin. Set basin of salted water aside. Salt individual leaves of the cabbage with ½ cup of salt. Apply more salt to the stem part of the cabbage. Then re-submerge the cabbage back into the basin of salted water.
After 2 hours, check to see if the cabbage stem can bend without breaking. If not, leave the cabbage for another 30 minutes and repeat, until the stem part of the cabbage can bend without breaking.
Making the sauce:
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add the sheet of kombu and dried shiitake mushroom. Boil on medium for 15 minutes before removing the kombu and shiitake mushroom. Then add 2 tablespoons of sweet rice flour and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Whisk for 15 minutes or until it becomes thick. Cool in ice bath and set aside.
In a blender, add ½ cup of garlic, 2 teaspoons of ginger, 1 peeled onion, 1 peeled and cored Korean pear, ½ cup of fish sauce ½ cup of fermented baby shrimp.
Place purée into a bowl and add 2 cups of Korean red pepper flakes and the sweet rice porridge. Mix thoroughly.
Julienne the radish, chop the green onions and add to the sauce.
Applying the sauce on the cabbage:
Once the cabbage is fully wilted, strain the water and generously apply the sauce on every leaf. Place each quarter firmly down in the container.
Leave the container of kimchi in room temperature. Check daily to see if it is fermentated to your liking. Usually takes about 3-5 days. Use a ladle to press down on the cabbage, removing any trapped air and to help submerge the cabbage in the liquid that has formed. Refrigerate when the desired level of fermentation has been achieved.
7 Kimchi Facts
i’m just going to do it- i’m going to make kimchi.
the fact that i’ve never made kimchi, may come as a surprise, since i’m korean (and of a certain age- 40).
the thing is, you get your kimchi from your mom or your local korean market.
koreans hold making kimchi as something sacred-not to be taken lightly; and also seen as labor intensive, so they are usually made in large batches.
however, i am inspired by the many non-koreans who fearlessly attempt to make kimchi.
my mother never taught me how to cook, let alone how to make kimchi. she never let me step foot into the kitchen.
aside from growing up eating kimchi, i don’t have any experience, any special recipes or any special ingredients.
i’m truly daunted by what i am about to do. it’s going to require all of my very limited culinary acumen.
follow up posts to come!
That’s all my 11 year old would drink, if she could.
More specifically, it’s what she would eat- the chewy tapioca balls on the bottom of the drink. She always asks for extra and spoons out the ones left over, after she finishes the tea.
Thanks to her- I am now an addict.
*Boba originated in Taiwan during the 1980’s.
**Just a few boba teas we’ve had recently. Click on pic for the business instagram pages (page for honey boba is not available).
I used to think classical recordings were all the same. Afterall, they are playing from sheet music that includes the exact note, count and musical articulation. But it turns out, a classical piece can be interpreted in different ways.
Take for example, these two interpretations of Chopin Opus 25 No. 5 in E Minor- one by and another by Lang Lang. They are distinctly different.
I liken it to an artist doing a cover on someone else’s song- except, with a cover, you know what the original song sounds like. With classical pieces, that predate recording, there is only the sheet music to go by. There is no way of knowing how the original composer of the music played it, no reference point.
Lang Lang and Vladimir Ashkenazy are not playing Chopin, they are playing their version of Chopin, since it is not possible to know how Chopin’s version sounded.
The sheet music is merely a guide; whoever is playing the piece can completely alter the mood.
Click on below picture for link to the two versions:
it’s not what you think. it’s not so much about my love for coffee but it’s the about how i obsess about how much to drink it & when to drink it.
am i drinking too much? is it too late to drink it?
if i drink on an empty stomach, though it seems to curb my appetite at first, hunger strikes out of nowhere. and i’m left to frantically find something to eat and/or gorge on food because the hunger doesn’t subside.
sometimes, if i drink too many cups throughout the day- my mind remains too wired to go to bed.
i absolutely love coffee- black, with cream, with cream and sugar, any which way- the way i drink it just depends on my mood and the type of coffee. but mostly clean with nothing added.
i love the act of drinking- while sitting in a cafe, walking in the park or while getting ready for the day every morning.
i’m obsessed about coffee.
i want to worry less and enjoy more.
obsession. both good and bad.
it's hard to believe there are only two months left in the year. i was just starting to settle into 2018...
as i look at the 2018 foomu27 playlist, i am reminded of the abundance of experiences i have had, through music. the fortunate happenstance of music via: radio, restaurants, cabs, friends, etc. and songs already in the glossary of my mind, awakened by an event or an emotion- enhancing my daily life. shazam has been an amazing tool for when i need to place a title and an artist to music i can’t identify.
i hope you enjoy the playlist, as much as i have enjoyed putting it together.
click on the icon below for the link to the latest foomu27 playlist for 2018:
not all things start from the beginning; such as the case with my discovery of the food magazine- lucky peach.
i came across lucky peach during the summer of 2017, while spending some time (two months) in montreal.
the canadian equivalent of barnes and noble had them lined up by their register.
i quickly added the magazine to my pile of books and magazines for purchase, after browsing through it briefly, during my wait to checkout.
i was instantly hooked. i couldn't believe this kind of food magazine existed. it felt like a whole new world had opened up to me. a world in which a food magazine didn’t confine themselves to the ordinary but covered more than mere recipes and glossy photos of food.
you first notice the design. it's visually different from any other food magazine. it’s filled with whimsical artwork and unique photography from cover to cover.
and then the writing- it reveals a deeper background of the food through original and intelligently written articles, essays and interviews.
there are also short fictional pieces, that have little or almost nothing to do with food. just great stories.
i was sad to discover the issue i picked up at the bookstore was actually their last. i was filled with regret for not having known about it earlier but soon found past issues on amazon. i ordered all the available issues of the 24 through amazon.
i savor each issue; like it’s my last. and read each one; like it’s my first.
so the lesson of the story is: go to book stores- you will find books and magazines that you wouldn't ordinarily be exposed to, ie, when you online shop, and... it's always better late, than never.
*lucky peach was co-founded by writer peter meehan and restauranteur david chang. some of their contributing writers included the late anthony bourdain and jonathan gold.
The Dave Chang Show. Such an insightful show on so much more than just food.
I listened to Part 1 and Part 2 of the show with Chef Christina Tosi of Milk Bar, who is opening her flagship location in Los Angleles tomorrow (7150 Melrose, off of La Brea in Fairfax).
Whereas, Christina Tosi's Chef's Table episode centered around her Milk Bar years, the podcast shares their memories of the early years together at Momofuku Noodle Bar.
I did not know Christina Tosi played such an integral part in building the foundation of Momofuku.
They speak of how much of their current success is a result of this special bond they have together, which is likened to being siblings. They are not afraid to say something the other may not want to hear. And through this honesty, they are able to raise each other up by both, celebrating their abilities and pointing out their flaws.
David Chang is not David Chang without Christina Tosi; Christina Tosi is not Christina Tosi without David Chang.
Everytime they open a new restaurant, the DNA of the two are imprinted.
Every new restaurant location, a culmination of their growth through and with each other.
David Chang must feel like a proud brother, when he sees what Christina Tosi as done, at her newest location.
Subscribe to the show.
Listen to the episode with Christina Tosi.
And checkout her LA location.
click below for links to the podcasts and milk bar website