The Korean Food Foundation at Food Network’s Wine & Food Festival

Consul General of the Republic of Korea in New York, Se-joo Son

Article by Yvonne Lo
Photo credit Niko

The Korean Food Foundation participated at the Sixth Annual Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF) that took place October 17-20, 2013 as a sponsoring partner in an effort to spread greater awareness of social issues such as poverty while enhancing the globalization of Korean cuisine. Consul General of the Republic of Korea in New York, Se-joo Son, also was in attendance to support the Korean Food Foundation and enjoyed the wonderful signature Grand Tasting event of New York City Wine & Food Festival hosted by Food Network.

Chef Deuki Hong, Se-joo Son (Consul General of the Republic of Korea in New York)

Chef de cuisine Deuki Hong joins the Korean Food Foundation in representing Korean fermentation as the iconic custom of Korean cuisine culture. At the Korean Food Foundation sponsored booth, Chef Hong presented a Kimichi Dubu dish to the attendants of Grand Tasting.

Chef Deuki Hong

Chef Hong was raised in the Tribeca Area and he is greatly passionate about Korean cuisine. Chef Hong has specialized in preparing fermented foods during his development as a talented Korean-American chef from the Tribeca area. Deuki Hong is known as an emerging chef with a sophisticated palette and modern approach to appraising traditional Korean flavors, developed through his past experiences with world-renowned chefs such as Jean-Georges Vongerichten, David Chang of Momofuku and Aarón Sánchez. He began his education in the culinary arts at the ripe age of 15 in one of New York’s finest restaurants, Centrico in Tribeca. Chef Hong studied at the Culinary Institute of America where he graduated near the top of his class. His academic excellence at the Culinary Institute of America is particularly impressive as he was the youngest student to enroll and graduate from the school.

Kimchi Dubu

Chef Hong’s Kimchi Dubu is prepared by assembling a soft Dubu (tofu) that is homemade from gently mixing fresh soymilk and gypsum (magnesium chloride) coagulant into a solution and is later steamed for 40 minutes. A kimchi bacon compote is applied on top of the Dubu after it has completely cooled after approximately 4 hours. The compote is precisely crafted by placing finely diced bacon and onions inside a pot over a low medium heat until the onions soften. Diced kimchi is then added and cooked for approximately five minutes in order to optimize the fermented flavor. Once taken off the heat, the ingredients are seasoned with Kimchi juice, sesame oil, and a Korean fermented chili paste called Gochujang that is blended with apple cider vinegar, sugar and sprinkled xanthan gum for a thicker texture. The final Kimchi Dubu is served with a tastefully pleasing garnish comprised of gold squash shoots, sesame seeds, and perilla salt.

Kimchi Dubu by Chef Deuki Hung

The Kimichi Dubu three highlighted fermented ingredients are kimichi, jeotgal (salted seafood), and Gochujang (red chili paste). Commonly perceived as a side dish, Chef Hong elevates the kimichi to be the star of the dish, to be “beyond just an appetizer.” Not only was it presented beautifully, but it tasted subtly delicious. The softness of the dubu complimented the crunch, the heat, and the exploding flavor of kimichi. Surprisingly, the kimchi was not as spicy as expected due to the perilla salt that brought out a slight sweetness from the onions. The gold squash shoots were vibrant gold colored leaves, with a crunchy stem that was filled with a mouthwatering fresh squash flavor. It brought an autumn touch to the entire presentation. It was truly a wonderful experience and a pleasure to eat.

Lauryn Chun, MIL Kimchi Founder

Joined by Kimichi fermentation enthusiasts, Melissa Clark of The New York Times and Lauryn Chun, MIL Kimchi Founder. Melissa Clark is a published author of several cookbooks including the acclaimed “In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite” and she is a writer for The New York Times for the weekly food column called “A Good Appetite”. Clark’s passion for cooking has led her to collaborative work with Rachel Ray, Martha Stewart along with many other New York’s celebrated chefs. Chun’s enthusiasm for Kimchi and Korean fermentation has motivated her to establish the Mother-in-Law’s Kimchi (MILKimchi) company which sells Kimchi based on an original recipe from her mother’s restaurant (which has been open for over 20 years in Garden Grove, California).

Chef Myung Sook Lee

We also got a chance to speak to another top Korean chef, Chef Myung Sook Lee who appeared on the popular cooking show Iron Chef Japan, where she defeated Iron Chef Chen Kenichi. She is also the executive chef for the Culinary Institute of California’s (CIC) Asian Flavors and Cuisines department and also cooks for special events at the Korean Embassy.

Tyler Florence

The Grand Tasting presented by ShopRite showcased the cultural brilliance of Korean cuisine alongside culinary superstars such as Chris Cheung, Pichet OngRobert IrvineEd LevineMarco CanoraEinat Admony, Sunny AndersonKelsey Nixon, Tyler Florence, Bobby Flay, Emeril Lagasse, Justin Warner, Damaris Phillips, Keith Schroeder, Andrew Zimmern, Sophia Lee, David Lee and Masaharu Morimoto.

For more about Korean Food Foundation, please visit: http://www.hansik.org
For more about New York City Wine & Food Festival, please visit: http://www.nycwff.org

Ed Levine, J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, Einat Aidmony

Damaris Phillips

Justin Warner

Kelsey Nixon

Sunny Anderson

Marco Canora

Robert Irvine

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