Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Book Review: Koreatown: A Cookbook

I will say, I was a little nervous about reviewing Koreatown: A Cookbook by Deuki Hong and Matt Rodbard.  Korean food, as I know it, is super meat heavy. Fortunately, much like Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees (you can read my review here), the majority of these recipes are easy to veganize.

First the easy stuff, leave the shrimp out of the kimchi.  I never put it in, and it's fine.The whole egg on top thing...just leave it out.  Korean food is so flavorful, a missing egg isn't going to ruin the dish.

And really, everything is not better with bacon or an egg on top. Don't drink the Kool-Aid, people.  The rest... do what you do with any meat-based recipes... substitute with tofu, plant-based faux-meat products, or use veggies.

Some of the ingredients might seem foreign to you, but yay for the internet. Everything you need is online.  If you're near an Asian market, or H-Mart, even better.  And believe, me, once you start using gochujang, it will change your life.

I am most interested in making Ssamjang, The Great Korean Barbecue Condiment, which is allegedly "a killer dip for raw vegetables like carrots and celery."  All of the banchan looks great, but I'm slightly obsessed with banchan.  The Dubu Jorim, soy-braised tofu, looks more like something I'd take for lunch with a side of rice than banchan, but I'm going to try it out tomorrow.  The next day, it'll be Korean Fried Broccoli...everyone does cauliflower, but broccoli?  I'm fascinated!

WOULD I BUY IT:  Absolutely.  None of the recipes in Koreatown: A Cookbook look overly complex.  They include ingredients I already own, but in fairness, I doubt the average person would have all of them.  And if you get stuck on substitutions, just google it.  I found a million sites with vegan substitutions for fish cakes and squid.  

I received a free copy of this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.  There was no obligation to give a positive review, and if you read my blog, you know I'm a tell-it-like it is kind of girl.  I mean what I say and say what I mean, that holds true for my review.

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