It has come to my attention in recent weeks that I spend entirely too much time on The Delicious Life...
Yes, I do spend too much time on The Delicious Life, but I actually need to finish my sentence.
Obviously, I didn’t come to this realization myself, as I was far too absorbed in gazing at my muffin-crumb-filled navel that is rapidly disappearing into some rather unbecoming “folds.” I have received a few fyi comments and other such unsavory, though somewhat amusing, emails suggesting that I should write about things that are appropriate for a food blog. Like food.
*ouch* That hurts.
Hm. That memo from the Food Blog Council must have been sequestered straight into my Gmail Spam recipe box. Or perhaps I accidentally glossed over Food Blogging Code, Section 350(d)(F) that lists "appropriate" food blogging topics. If someone has a copy of that Code, would you mind forwarding it to me? Thanks.
So after my initial I'm slightly-offended, sarcastic yet silent non-responsive response (see above), I phased into my second reaction. I stomped around my apartment with indignation in high heels and a frilly apron, waving a very large balloon whisk in large air-figure-eights around my head that, if not for being physiologically attached to my neck, would have flown off into the corner like yesterday's wilted Iceberg for how violently I was jerking it back and forth, side to side. I was shouting in an inner histrionic monologue born of a drag queen latifah. "Food blog? Damn right, this is a food blog! This is my blog. Mine! And I can write about what ever the !#$%^& @$%!!& I want to! Unh unh, honey. Ain't nobody telling this Delicious princess what to write on my food blog! Mmmmm hm. That's right. Delicious this!" And I was punctuating each statement with a righteous twirl of my whisk.
Then I sat down at my laptop and begrudgingly realized that they were right. I was just being arrogant and defensive. This is a food blog. I should write about food. I should provide valuable, educational information about food, its history, its popular preparations and maybe even some of its lesser known serving suggestions, list some fun facts about it, spit out some nutritional data, etc. etc. etc. You know, like all those fabulously informative and entertaining shows on the Food Network. I should be like Jim O'Connor on The Secret Life of! (I really shouldn't make fun because Jim's kinda cute.)
How about I just write about bulgogi?
The Korean phrase "bulgogi," is not, as it would seem from its popular Romanization, one word. "Bulgogi," is, in fact, two words, "bul" and "gogi." It is in their glorious smacked-together-ness that they refer to one thing. And since this is my blog, I will now take the liberty to de-Romanize the popular version "bulgogi" and re-Romanize in the Delicious version that I think makes more sense for pronunciation based on reading Roman letters off a page.
It is much more like a breathy "bool" than whatever it is supposed to sound like with the "U," and it certainly doesn't rhyme with "dull." "Bool" literally translates to "light" and/or "fire."
Now, I'm tempted to re-Romanize "gogi" as "gogee," but then it might be mistakenly pronounced as "go, G," but in the end, it just rhymes with "bogey." "Gogi" translates to "meat."
(I would have called upon one totally played out SNL rap skit to inject some humor into this Korean linguistics lesson, but like I said, it has been painfully overused. I'll just play it straight. For now.)
Bool gogi in it most popular form is thinly sliced boneless beef, the slightly more refined sibling of galbee, which are the fatty, meaty, thick shortribs. Both meats are marinated in a sweet, soy-sesame seasoning, then grilled. Though galbee is always made from either regular- or cross-cut shortribs (literal translation of the word "galbee" is "rib"), bool gogi beef can be any tender boneless cut that allows for thin slices - ribeye, flank steak, etc. Bool gogi also doesn't always have to be grilled over a fire, as the name would suggest, but can be pan-fried or sautéed, or set under a broiler (which is basically inverse grilling, right?).
But since "bool gogi" translates to "fire meat," technically, you could use any sort of meat, not just beef. Koreans make "dae-jee bool gogi," which is thinly sliced pork marinated in a fairly spicy seasoning then grilled. Back in Berkeley, I used to schlep into Steve's Barbecue and order combo-numbah-two daeeeeee-jee-bool-gogi! about once a week. Maybe more often if we were in finals. Galbee and regular bool gogi were boring in their salty, overly sweet marinade, but the dae-jee bool gogi, with its spicy kick from goh-choo-jahng (Korean hot pepper paste) and goh-choo-ga-roo (Korean red pepper powder) was awesome.
For your reference, dae-jee=pig , therefore dae-jee + bool gogi = pig fire meat.
*whoa* "Pig fire meat" sounds sooooo much better.
Because chicken is meat, then bool gogi can also be made from chicken! It is dahk bool gogi. The marinade for dahk bool gogi is very similar to its beefier cousins', with only a slight adjustment to the ratios of soy sauce, salt, and sesame oil to account for the much blander meat, and potential dryness of chicken breast. I haven't
seen dahk bool gogi much on menus in Korean restaurants. In fact, I don't think I've ever seen it, so maybe I am making this all up as we go along. But I think I've been pretty convincing thus far, yes? ;) Actually, I have seen what would be considered dahk bool gogi, but for some reason, Koreans want to call it something else like dahk gui, "gooey" referring to it being grilled. Don't be fooled. It's really dahk bool gogi.
Bool gogi doesn't work for fish. Fish is not meat. Next!
So I made chicken bool gogi, as part of my personal Seoul Searching efforts for 2006, very long on the heels of dahk jjim, a Korean braised chicken stew. The dahk bool gogi tasted alright, except that I should know by now that whenever I think I've added enough heat (spice), I should add more. I guess that's what kimchee is for.
I feel so Korean now.
** a year ago today, i popped my wbw cherry with a sicilian **