Category Archives: bacon

Iron Chef, challenge pork tenderloin

Over the weekend, our church’s young adult ministry had an Iron Chef competition where 4 teams of 2-3 people had just one hour to cook a winning dish using the following ingredients:

– pork tenderloin

– strawberries

– brussel sprouts

– spicy brown mustard

– frozen tater tots

Here’s what the teams made:

collage of foodAnd the judges that critiqued us


Doesn’t one judge look particularly intense? 🙂

Team Sandra and Min came out the winners (bottom right plate) as their food was the best. I loved their brussel sprout slaw with green apple and Parmesan cheese.. addicting. Their mustard apricot sauce for the pork was beautiful and tasty. Their dessert was not only beautiful but light and flavorful with the addition of vanilla bean seeds.. seriously gourmet stuff.

Winning 2nd place, our food (top left) left an impression with the way we mashed up the tater tots like a hash brown to make it nice and crisp. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to make a dessert but nonetheless, stood by our food.

Team Fred and Owen won the kids’ votes (bottom left) with their tonkatsu and bacon fried rice (mmm..bacon). We were all impressed with their homemade katsu sauce!

Team Jack and Dave’s signature item was their 2 kinds of chimichurri to go with the pork. Pastor Joel was so funny. He didn’t know how to spell it and wrote it out in Korean on his comment form.

Overall, it was a fun experience despite slicing part of a fingernail off with 2 minutes left in the competition (thanks GL for being the medic). I’m proud of our team! It was funny seeing everyone looking exhausted (and relieved it was over) at church the next day.

team pic

Giveaway: Seoultown Kitchen by Debbie Lee

It’s been over two years since I wrote my first blog post. As a fun way to thank my awesome readers, I thought I’d do a cookbook giveaway as one lucky winner will receive a copy of Seoultown Kitchen by Debbie Lee. This was actually chosen as one of the ten New York Times 2011 Notable Cookbooks and she was also a contestant on the Food Network’s reality competition show (for person with their own show). The reason I chose this book was I’ve often been that friend that’s taken my non-Korean friends to enjoy some delicious Korean BBQ. Not necessarily because they haven’t tried it but it’s always fun to go with someone who speaks the language and understands the culture (to some extent).

I remember in grad school when four of my friends and I took a well deserved extended dinner ‘break’ to enjoy some Korean BBQ while we were studying for our comprehensive exam (the last HUGE hurdle before the real world).

cover 2

I didn’t actually watch the The Next Food Network Star (as she was a contestant) but judging from the book, she definitely seems like she puts a lot of love into her food. It’s written for a mainstream audience while honoring the traditional Korean flavors and also throwing in some western flavors and ingredients like bacon (hello!). She devotes a full chapter to pork (pork belly), tofu, kimchi, etc. It’s cool how her book has come into the mainstream market when Korean food has popularized. I’m seeing food bloggers make kimchi and use ingredients like gochujang (red pepper paste).

Doesn’t this look amazing? Bacon wrapped tteok(rice cake) skewers. Btw, the pictures in the cookbook are gorgeous so don’t judge by my iphone shots of the pages.

bacon tteok skewer

Or Korean style chile chicken wings

ckn wings 2

And nakji bokeum (spicy seafood stir-fry) with noodles

nakji bokeum 2

So I’ve tempted you with these close-ups. Here’s how to enter the giveaway:

1. Leave a comment below mentioning your favorite Korean dish/food. Only one comment (entry) per person (see #2 for the exception). Please include your email when you enter (only visible to me. I won’t spam you.)

2. Leave a 2nd comment saying you’re a current or new subscriber (you can do so in the next 7 days).

I’ll randomly choose a winner next Friday, January 18, 2013 at noon, PST. Sorry, this is only open to US residents.