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Dave – I used to work with Dave at SMG . He is one of the most hilarious, creative people I have ever met. He likes to write and sing songs about man boobs.
Neva – Neva is Dave’s pretty girlfriend. She is an amazing person who always seems genuinely interested in what you have to say. I love people like that.
Dave lived in Korea and has been raving nonstop about a Korean dish called Bibimbap (Korean pronunciation: [pibimpap]). The word literally means “mixed rice.” Being that we live in Boise, ID, there are not too many Korean restaurants and Dave insisted that it is the best hangover food ever. Please feel free to correct me if I am wrong about the Korean restaurants in Boise.
Dave sold me a camera lens and I was a jerk and didn’t write the check for enough $. He told me not to rewrite the check, but I would need to repay him with Bibimbap. I agreed to take on the challenge.
This is the description of Bibimbap from Wikipedia: “Bibimbap is served as a bowl of warm white rice topped with namul (sautéed and seasoned vegetables) and gochujang (chili pepper paste). A raw or fried egg and sliced meat (usually beef) are common additions. The ingredients are stirred together thoroughly just before eating. It can be served either cold or hot.
The reviews looked good and the recipe seemed simple enough. The one ingredient not commonly found at the grocery store is Gochuchang. This is a spicy paste made from red peppers and bunch of other ingredients. Don’t even try to make Bibimbap without this. It is essential and amazing! Who is that dashing young man holding the Gochuchang?
Neva was able to find the Gochuchang at the Orient Market on Emerald St. in Boise. She looked up a picture of it on the internet first because she was too embarrassed to ask for it at the market. I thought that was cute. She also picked up another Korean condiment – Black Bean Paste. I thought this stuff was kind of weird tasting.
So anyways, I started out the night before by marinating the steak cut into thin strips. I used flank steak instead of ribeye. Everyone felt the steak was the best part. The marinade was incredibly good and in the future I will use it to marinade everyday steak. The best part is that it uses 7-up!
I grilled the meat about 7-8 minutes on low.
Then sautéed the spinach, carrots and Shiitake mushrooms in some sesame oil and salt.
Then I fried some eggs (over easy) and made the Gochuchang paste. When mixed up, the yolk from the eggs coats the other ingredients and makes it soooooooo good!!
Here is the finished bowl all stacked up.
I left the Gochuchang paste on the side for people to add their own since it is super spicy. We had a large mixing bowl at the table where everyone mixed up their own dish and preferred level of Gochuchang.
I would HIGHLY recommend this recipe. It was really simple with great flavor. Dave even said it tasted authentic! I blushed.
I also made some Oi Moochim (seasoned marinated cucumbers) from the same episode. You can find the recipe here. Equally as good!
Dave brought PLENTY of Miller Lite tall boys to accompany the meal. Not to mention the 3 bottles of wine we drank. It was a night filled with lively conversation and debauchery.
Thanks Dave for introducing me to some fabulous cuisine! I will definitely be making this often.
Merry Christmas from East Wenatchee, Washington! I am incredibly thankful to be home and spending time with my family. While we didn’t have a white Christmas at the house, there is a small dusting on the mountains.
We have been having the same breakfast casserole on Christmas morning since I can remember. It seems like most families have their own version of a breakfast casserole/soufflé. Ours is Dijon-maple flavored and we make it the night before so it has a chance to sit in the fridge overnight and get custardy. Also, this way everyone is free to open presents instead of slaving away in the kitchen.
This dish isn’t super fancy, but it is incredibly easy to make for a crowd and I haven’t heard a complaint yet.
Maple-Dijon Breakfast Casserole
1lb Jimmy Dean Maple Breakfast Sausage
6 Slices of Sourdough bread cut into cubes
1.5 Cups Tillamook Sharp Cheddar Cheese freshly grated
1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
2 Tablespoons Real Maple Syrup
½ Teaspoon Salt
¼ Teaspoon Pepper
2 Cups Half and Half
Dry Bread slices on cookie sheet for 2 hours. Arrange bread cubes in buttered casserole dish.
Fully cook the sausage and chop into crumbles.
Layer sausage on top of bread.
Beat eggs. Add mustard, syrup, salt and pepper, half & half and beat 1 minute more. Pour over sausage and bread. Make sure all of the bread is covered with the egg mixture. Sprinkle cheese over the top of the casserole.
Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bake for 45 minutes on 350 degrees.
What is your version of the breakfast casserole?? I would love to hear everyone else’s adaptation.
Hope your holiday is filled with fun and happiness!!
Merry Christmas to everyone! The holiday season is my favorite time of year and Christmas Eve happens to be my favorite part. My family has a tradition of hosting a fondue party every Christmas eve. Lots of dipping, eating and having fun.
And any Frei family holiday would be complete without a lot of red wine spilling. This year was no exception:
Fondue? Don’t mind if I do! I love fondue – I think it might be because I am a sauce person. I am obsessed with sauces. Fondue is the only meal I can think of where you dip every course and every bite. In the words of Lustopher Hardy – “A little bit of heaven”.
We generally setup the fondue around my parent’s kitchen island, which promotes lots of socializing.
Even Mavie (who has severe IBS (not joking) and is not allowed people food) tried to get a piece of yumminess.
For those of you not familiar with fondue, we have three courses for the party:
Easy to remember since it is the three basic food groups :).
I am sure some of you will be able to relate to this, but all of our family’s Christmas recipes have been around for so many years that they are stored in this little messy handwritten card holder my mom keeps.
I love looking through all these recipes every year. I even found a couple of Tomato Aspics (sick). We don’t make that anymore. My favorite was this recipe written on a Goodyear Tire notepad. Hehe.
Here are the fondue recipes.
Don’t worry, I retyped them :).
As previously mentioned, the night begins with the cheese fondue. I really could just have this course and be fine for the rest of the night. It is sooo freaking good. I have seen people make cheese fondue with many different types of cheeses and ingredients. We never stray from the traditional. Why fix what ain’t broken?
Important note: When eating the cheese you must be careful. It has been said that if you drop your piece of bread or fruit into the cheese you must kiss the person next to you. Generally, this gets a little strange because I am usually eating fondue with my family.
Traditional Cheese Fondue (Adapted from handwritten recipe circa 1972 by Pam Frei)
½ Pound freshly grated Emmentaler Swiss Cheese
½ Pound freshly grated Le Gruyere Cheese (Do not use processed Gruyere. The year we tried the processed is the same year we tried the chocolate fountain. It will forever be known as the year of the fondue failure and subsequently the year without a Santa Claus)
1.5 Cups Dry White Wine
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
1.5 Teaspoons Cornstarch
1 Garlic clove halved
½ Teaspoon Nutmeg
Salt and White Pepper to taste
3 Tablespoons Kirsch Cherry Liquor
Loaf of French bread cubed
2 Apples cubed
Roasted potatoes for dipping (optional)
Rub garlic on inside of large pot with two forks.
Remove garlic solids. Add white wine and lemon juice and heat over medium heat. Heat till air bubbles rise but to not boil. Whisk in cornstarch so there are no lumps. Reduce heat to low. Add a handful of cheese.
When cheese is melted add another handful. Do not boil. Add in nutmeg, salt and pepper and Kirsch. The Kirsch adds great flavor. At this point, we add the cheese mixture to a crockpot on high, so it doesn’t burn. Use fondue sticks to dip.
The Meat Course
The meat course is a little different because the eater is actually cooking their own meat.
Shrimp (peeled and deveined)
Steak (cut into chunks)
Chicken (cut into chunks and generally marinated)
Salmon (cut into chunks)
Heat the following over a stove until boiling and add to fondue pot.
2 Cups of Beef Broth
1 Cup Red Wine
We like to use Sterno, not tealights, as a heat source. Otherwise, it doesn’t get hot very fast.
Now for the dipping sauces – I try to make these the day prior to the party:
Sweet and Sour (my personal favorite)
¼ cup Catsup (this cracks me up! Anyone know the difference between catsup and ketchup?)
2 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons white vinegar
2 Tablespoons Major Grey’s Chutney
1/2 Cup sour cream
1/3 Cup mayonnaise
1.5 Tablespoons prepared mustard (the French’s kind. Not the Dijon)
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Teaspoon horseradish
Combine all ingredients and mix well
This can easily be used as salad dressing to.
¾ Cup sour cream
½ Teaspoon dry mustard
½ Teaspoon salt
½ Garlic clove minced
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ Cup mayonnaise
3 Oz. Crumbled blue cheese
Combine all ingredients with the exception of blue cheese in a large bowl. Mix for 2 minutes on low speed. Slowly add blue cheese and blend 4 more minutes. Refrigerate 24 hours prior to serving.
We take a shortcut and use Yoshida!
I am usually so stuffed at this point that I can barely walk, but I always make room for just a bit more since the chocolate is so good. Our recipe is super simple but really yummy!
2 Large bars of Symphony Chocolate with Toffee Bits – This stuff is the best and adds a little extra crunch
½ Cup Whipping Cream
2 ounces of Bailey’s Irish Cream (optional)
Use any combination of the following:
Pound Cake (bite size)
Cheesecake (bite size)
Leftover holiday cookies
At this point in the party I am generally ready to pass out since I am so full.
I hope you have all have a wonderful Christmas! I would love to hear about your Christmas traditions. Please post them in the comment section.
Be safe, be merry and eat & drink with reckless abandon! You can work it off later!