Part memoir and part cookbook, GROWING UP IN A KOREAN KITCHEN is one woman’s cultural and culinary story, weaving childhood reminiscences with lovingly gathered recipes. With descriptions of the traditional Korean kitchen, preparations for special feast days, and the rituals of everyday family meals, author Hi Soo Shin Hepinstall draws an engaging portrait of a seldom glimpsed way of life. Easy-to-follow recipes, largely handed down through oral tradition, cover the wide range of main and side dishes, from the sumptuous elegance of “royal cuisine” to simpler countryside cooking. Korean cuisine has emerged as one of the most exciting and robust tastes of Asia, with great variety and some of the world’s most sophisticated techniques for pickling and cooking with garlic and hot pepper. Cooks of all levels, as well as armchair travelers, will welcome this book to their collection.• Includes over 250 authentic recipes, a glossary, and a list of resources for finding uniquely Korean ingredients and utensils.• Illustrated with the author’s travel and family photos, depicting the cultural and culinary traditions of Korea.For a list of markets that carry Korean ingredients visit www.koreanfeast.com
Korean cuisine is a tantalizing blend of sour, sweet, hot, burning hot, salty, bitter, and nutty, or so writes Hi Soo Shin Hepinstall, author of Growing Up in a Korean Kitchen. Part autobiography and part cookbook, this remarkable work provides a practical introduction to a cuisine Americans have encountered with delight, and a poignant memoir of a time and place in which an average family meal could consist of seven or more dishes, hierarchically served according to gender and family standing (males and grandmas ruled).
Beginning with a scene-setting journey to the author’s childhood home, the book then provides a detailed account of relevant ingredients, equipment, techniques, and sauces and pastes (many based on soy beans and red pepper). Over 175 recipes follow for a wide range of everyday and special-occasion dishes, from rice and cereal specialties, including an intriguing fried rice with chicken, mushrooms, and kimchi; to fresh salad and vegetable dishes such as Sautéed Spring Garlic; to barbecued specialties like Fried Beef Ribs; to desserts and confections. A chapter on celebratory dishes, such as the extraordinary, multi-ingredient Celestial Hot Pot, is balanced by a homey section on stews and dishes such as Braised Pork Spareribs. Throughout, Hepinstall offers asides that place the food in its cultural context, variations, and technical information. With an illuminating section on tea and other drinks, the book makes an exciting introduction to a kind of cooking Westerners can now prepare and enjoy at home. –Arthur Boehm