Monday, July 12, 2010

korean food (it's not all BBQ)

Hello! I wanted to share a very very healthy, simple, inexpensive vegan Korean meal...

I mentioned in my last food post that I like cheap, healthy food. I also like to eat vegetables b/c I like to eat a lot, and eating veggies let's me eat more quantity.

This here is called "kongnamul bap" 콩나물
"Kong" is the name of the bean sprout, "namul" means any seasoned veggie dish, and "bap" means rice (you may now "bibimbap")



Most people think Korean food is just bbq ribs and beef. Very understandable. But, that's like thinking Russians only eat piroshkis, or Thai people only eat pad thai.

Recently my coworker asked me if Korean food is very greasy, and if it's mostly meat. I was astounded at first, as my mom's (she's Korean) Korean meals are vegetarian 99% of the time and far from greasy! We don't call it vegetarian, but that's just how they come out. But, given the fact that 80% of Korean restaurants feature tableside cooked meat, I totally understand why she asked me that. So, I wanted to share a very delicious, but not so well known dish that I always ask my mom to cook.

This meal I want to share with you is so simple. It's just steamed soy bean sprouts, and sauce. You must make sure to get soybean sprouts, and not regular sprouts.

Can you see the difference? On the top is soy bean sprouts, which have the yellow oval bean at the ends. They have more nutrition and flavor than the sprouts on the bottom.


Cooking instructions:

1) Wash sprouts, and pick off the tail end (personal preference). As for amount of sprouts ~ I am huge on veggies, so I would cook an entire pot full and eat all of it.

2) Cook 1 cup of rice. I consider 1 cup of uncooked rice 2 servings.

3) Bring water to a boil and cook sprouts for 5 minutes. Drain water, and

4) Throw a pinch of salt and black pepper on the sprouts and mix with chopsticks

5) Make seasoning ~ soy sauce, chopped green onion, sesame seed, sesame oil, Korean red chili powder if you have it (gochugaru http://bit.ly/awtHMW). Add in amounts to your liking.. some people prefer more or less sesame oil, etc.... I would not put more than 1 tblsp of sesame oil per person though..

If you are on a low sodium diet, you can eat this without the soy sauce, or use low sodium soy sauce, or just use it very sparingly. I love soy sauce and use it quite liberally, and it has no affect on my weight. I'd rather have a well seasoned meal versus a very fatty and rich meal.

For some healthy vegetable side dishes to go with your meal, please refer to Maanchi's recipes:

My mom usually has "kimchi muchim" (seasoned radish) and seasoned spinach:

Cooked sprouts:
Seasoning:
Mixed sprouts, seasoning + rice:


29 comments:

  1. i didn't know there was other stuff besides korean bbq & that place in j-town called arang! ohh speaking of...i saw your mom there by the way at arang....haha! i was with bryan and he said hi to her...and it was so awkward. i said hi and i was like oh yeah...me and bryan we live together. and then i realized what i said...and i was oh...Bryan is MY ROOMMATE! lol

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  2. Mmm...yummy! Thanks for sharing babe. lol As a matter of fact, I was craving Korean food today!

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  3. Yum! I love trying new recipes. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM.
    What do you mean Korean food isn't just greasy ribs? C'mon Sophia, everybody knows that Chinese food is all fried rice, orange chicken and chow mein. Who the heck is that General Tsao guy though? HAHAHAH jk jk jk jk

    OMG i actually know what this dish is though and I LOVES IT.

    A lot of people just don't seem to understand that Eastern diets (not just for Asians but other countries as well) do not consume a lot of meat! If you compare the diet pattern of America vs Eastern countries, meat is eaten sparingly. People are just freaking ignorant twats. We've gone over this. LOL

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  5. "ignorant twats" <-- beautiful hahahaha

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  6. This is great!! I thought all korean dishes would be difficult to cook, but this seems really easy!! Will definitely try it! Did you use light soy sauce and not dark right? Thanks so much =) xX

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  7. ^PinkOrchids ~ I use regular soy sauce :) Sometimes I dilute it by adding a bit of water!

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  8. It all looks so delicous. xx

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  9. Yuuuuuummmm. Send me some! Hahaha!
    I love Korean food. (That I've tried so far at least)

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  10. umm this looks yummy!!
    thanks for sharing
    http://heelsandlipgloss.blogspot.com/

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  11. I don't eat bean sprouts that much, but they're so refreshing! I can't be a complete vegetarian but I do love my vegetables too :)

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  12. Sophia! I like your very analytical mind :) I know exactly what you mean about inaccurate representation of the general population and drawing skewed conclusions from small sampled studies.. The tips I tend to heed are the ones about how to exercise properly/efficiently. I agree with you that it's about making conscious decisions when eating and being active :) It's cool that your sis is a dietician! My sister is interested in studying that too.

    Wow didn't know you were part Korean? :P I love that there are so many varieties of Korean veggie dishes! The kongmanul bap looks delicious.. I think I can turn vegetarian :) which I wouldn't mind at all haha.

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  13. You are so pro, Sophia! :) It is so good to be able to cook delicious food that is non-oily and rich in veggies :)

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  14. Yummie!!! I am totally going to try this recipe!!! I love Korean food! :)

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  15. That looks delicious. I love Korean food- not really BBQ but their soups.

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  16. i love korean food :) and i don't mean kbbq! haha whenever i go out, i somehow end up at a korean place.

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  17. OMG this is one of my favvvvvvssssss <3

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  18. omgosh thanks a lot!! I just recently became a vegan.. its been almost a month now I think, i'm definitley gonna try this!!!

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  19. that looks so healthy! I shall try that :D and did you write me an e mail? I didn't get it in my hotmail -_-

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  20. I love Korean BBQ (esp the ribs) but I love the other Korean food better. My favorite is Soondubujiggae. Mmmm.

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  21. It looks so healthy! I love your point of being able to eat a lot more by eating veggies.
    So, you said you've been to Tokyo, just curious, are you part Japanese??

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  22. I'm so lazy when it comes to making this dish. I just put it on top of the rice when it's being cooked in the rice cooker... hehe~

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  23. Hi Sophia! Oh that looks so good!I love sprouts! I know how to make some dishes, but are there some other recipes you can share with me? You can email me if you want :)

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  24. looks yummy!


    >> beneaththesunn.blogspot.com

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  25. I actually cook the sprouts in the rice cooker (maybe I'm too lazy lol). The seasoning is my faavvv, try chopping up some jalapenos and it adds crunch + hot flavor. I usually am a little too zealous with the yyang-yum so I boil tofu and mix it in as well. Thank you so much for posting this, I feel like people only associate Korean food with bbq. Darn you America for loving meat so much...

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  26. Ooooh so this is what it's called! I've eaten just the soybean sprouts, lightly seasoned, as a banchan before to compliment my rice, but not with its special soy sauce!! xD Who knew that if you paired it with a sauce and put it over rice, it'd be it's own dish! Thanks for teaching us about this Korean dish! ^_^ I learn something new from you everytime I read your blog!<3

    ♥ caroline

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