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ZenKimchi
Korea Food Blogging since 2004

10 Best Korean Chicken Joints

My rule of thumb is this. To tell a good chicken place, look at the people inside. If it’s full of beautiful young women taking selfies, likely isn’t good chicken. If it’s full of middle-aged men who look like life has kicked them in the teeth–GREAT CHICKEN!

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Impeachment, Robert Kelly, and Whoa F*&% Korea!

I arrived in Korea in 2004. I already had an interest in the country because of a couple courses in Korean history I took. The plan was to stay a year, but when that first year was up, I looked at all the change happening around me. This was a part of the world where...
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What Is Korean Buddhist Temple Cuisine?

A quick rundown of temple cuisine and eating meditation

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Happy New Year! Saehae bok manhi badeuseyo! 새해복많이받으세요 ^^

Happy YEAR OF THE ROOSTER from the ZenKimchi household. We're heading out to the in-laws in Gyeongju this weekend. Yea! Traffic! So there will be no food tours this weekend. Besides, from experience, most of the restaurants are closed anyway. BUT... We will run a...
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Coming to Seoul? Your plans aren’t complete without a full immersion food tour

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8HWwhF1RVQ Let's be honest. Compared to its neighbors, Seoul's sights are fine but are dwarfed. What makes world travelers come to Seoul and return is its culture. Its nightlife. Yet it's hard to navigate if you're new to the area....
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Korean Pantry: The Pastes

When starting out your Korean pantry, the pastes are some of the most uniquely Korean components. At the Asian supermarket, I'm sure you've stared at that wall of green, brown, and red plastic tubs, wondering what they held inside. Let's demystify all that. Doenjang...

Kimchi Okonomiyaki

Since I have a large half-used bag of 부침 buchim pancake mix begging to be brought onto the front lines of my kitchen, I decided to make kimchi okonomiyaki. I'm always in such a hurry — 빨리 빨리 bbali, bbali! So what could be better than adding kimchi to the popular...

Survival Guide to Korean Coffee Part IV: For the Haters

Although Korea's coffee market has matured in recent years, there are many places capitalizing on the trend but cutting all the corners they can. This is the third post in a four-part series by Steve Ward designed to teach you how to find the good hole-in-the-wall...

Survival Guide to Korean Coffee Part III: On Roasts

Although Korea's coffee market has matured in recent years, there are many places capitalizing on the trend but cutting all the corners they can. This is the third post in a four-part series by Steve Ward designed to teach you how to find the good hole-in-the-wall...

Amazing Grilled Octopus

I'm always excited when, after living here for eight years, I find a great food that I had never had before. Friends, meet Nakji Gguri. It's barely grilled octopus. Still rare in the middle while just kissed by charcoal flames. This particular kind was just rubbed in...

Survival Guide to Korean Coffee Part I: The Basics

Although Korea's coffee market has matured in recent years, there are many places capitalizing on the trend but cutting all the corners they can. This is the first post in a four-part series by Steve Ward designed to teach you how to find the good hole-in-the-wall...

Korean Carrots (Koreyscha Sabzili Salat)

Korean carrot salad, pronounced Koreyscha Sabzili Salat in the Uzbek language, is ubiquitous throughout the former Soviet Union. The dish was invented by Korean immigrants to Russia's Far East and the recipe would have stayed there if Stalin hadn't forcibly deported...

Spring Herb Dishes of Korea

Clockwise from the top left are seawater tofu, dallae (달래 - small wild onion or Allium monanthum), naeng-yi (냉이 - Capsella bursapastoris), and godeul bbaegi (고들뺴기 - Crepidiastrum sonchifolium).  With the exception of tofu, these are considered early spring herbs...

Fresh Tot (a.k.a. hijiki) 3 Ways

One thing I miss about living in Korea is the abundance of sea vegetables.  Although more people are now aware of and have found applications for a couple of kinds of dried seaweed in the U.S., such as nori (김 - gim, dried laver) for California rolls and kombu (다시마 -...

10 Days in Seoul: A food guide

UPDATED JANUARY 9TH, 2017 Reader (and friend) Żaklina had this question: Do you have recommendations or a 10-day restaurant tour guide for Seoul? My parents are coming to visit for 2 weeks, and I'm looking to take them to restaurants in Seoul. Any suggestions with...

LATEST POSTS

Baru Gongyang Kong 바루공양 콩

The little sister to Baru Gongyang (also spelled puzzlingly “Balwoo”) is best known as a lunch stop. It’s in the Temple Stay building across from Jogyesa Temple. I used to go there regularly, but the management there was getting increasingly rude and patronizing. After a year, I decided to return. It has changed a lot.

Banchan: Happy Samgyeopsal Day!

Today's March 3rd. Those threes (sam) mean it's Samgyeopsal Day. It's a good day to enjoy some Korean pork belly, if it hasn't been all bought up following the week-long smoggy gift from China. Now for the Banchan! News Congratulations to Chef Im Jung Sik and his...

Recipe: Beef Soondubu Jjigae (순두부 찌개)

I've been fortunate enough that this current winter has thankfully been the mildest I've had in Korea yet. But we're still talking negative double digit temps here on some nights so it's no surprise I've been craving a lot of hearty and warm dishes for dinner lately....

Thugs Turn Over Street Food Carts in Gangnam

These videos popped up yesterday. I don't know if these guys are related to the government. Something similar happened a couple of years ago in north Seoul. It could also be gangsters punishing these vendors for not playing by their rules....

Burgers From Mother’s Office in Noksapyeong

Address:  서울시 용산구 이태원 동 580 2층 580, Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul 2nd Floor Telephone: 070-4158-1669 Parking: Unavailable Alcohol: Bottled and draft beer, cocktails available Tip: Mother's Office has a special lunch menu on weekdays in which...

Cheogajip: North Korean Restaurant Featured in The Washington Post

Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema posted his culinary highlights of 2013. Included was a lunch we had at the humble but divine Cheogajip. I credit Jennifer Flinn for telling me about this place. It's really off the radar. As the article says, it's basically run...

Douceurs au miel et aux epices, recettes medicinales coreennes

Dans la tradition de la cuisine coréenne, ou la cuisine asiatique en générale, le terme « dessert » n'existe pas… cependant, il ne manque pas de recette sucrée ! En les découvrant, nous pouvons voir une autre utilisation du sucre se mêlant avec du sel et des...

ON TV: ZenKimchi on “Chef on the Road”

I'm a little late reporting this. THAT'S HOW BUSY I'VE BEEN HERE!! Channel: National Geographic Channel Show: "Chef on the Road" Host: Chef Ryan Clift (Tippling Club, Singapore) THE PLOT Award-winning chef Ryan Clift has five days to learn what he can about Korean...

Salade a la dorade crue sauce coreenne

Cela fait un moment que l'Occident a découvert les mets de poisson cru. Depuis, nous avons vu tant de restaurants de sushi et cela proposant tous à peu près les mêmes choses. N'est-ce pas maintenant qu'il est temps de changer et varier le plaisir de cet ingrédients ?...

Nonhyeon-dong Style: “Hopscotch” Gastro Pub

Long before Psy warbled about it, Gangnam was Korea’s capital of cool, but hipsters with taste (are there any…?) may now be heading for the neighboring hood of Nonhyeon-dong. Here, their destination is a spot called “Hopscotch.”

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