After the Mahouka movie and my thrift store finds, we browsed the Japantown mall. In the atrium area, there was an amazing Japanese clothing brand~ They were having an exhibition to advertise and sell their products, and I totally got sucked in. Everything was amazing!!! I could tell even from a distance that it was my type of clothing, from the colors to the cut.
The company is called Usaato, a contraction of Usaburo Sato, the designer’s name. It’s a pun: “usaato” also means “rabbit” (although it’s a less common word than “usagi”), which they use in their logo. Here’s their Facebook page (in Japanese) and their USA page, which still has quite a bit of Japanese.
A few weeks ago, J and I had an uncharacteristically adventurous and nature-filled weekend with our friend A. It turns out A really likes hiking and such, especially since he can look for cool bugs! I’m more into plants, but it’s good to learn about native insects too. Sadly, we didn’t see any banana slugs 🙁
There aren’t a lot of gochujang recipes online (in English). They don’t explain what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, so it’s hard to tell if it’s working. Because gochujang takes several months to ferment, I wanted to be extra sure that it would work. So I combined three different recipes with some advice from the beer-brewing community. Of course I started with Maangchi’s recipe, but I also consulted this video and Eating Korean. I’ll give you the recipe I ended up using, with some explanation at the end of what we’re doing.
J and I recently ran out of gochujang, a spicy fermented red pepper paste ubiquitous in Korean cooking. Since I’ve been trying more than usual to not buy things in plastic packaging, I was hesitant to buy a new container. (Although Wholly Jang offers gochujang and other products in glass, the company is currently on hiatus as they move to a different facility.) Fortunately, I discovered that you can make your own at home with just a few ingredients!!
Now that I’ve worked the kinks out of my mom’s bun recipe (the first version she sent had a few typos in it…), I can share it with you! These buns are delicious– slightly sweet, moist, fluffy. Even when I substitute a ton of the ingredients, they still turn out completely fine!
Refrigerator Potato Buns (makes 24 rolls)
1 1/8 tsp yeast
3/4 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, softened (1/4 cup butter can be used for lower fat)
Mix. Fry in oil ~3 min on each side. Serve with dipping sauce of choice.
We added some kimchi (~40 g) and some finely chopped leftover pork ( ~20 g), and ate it with mayonnaise and tempura dipping sauce. The fritters were pretty good! Surprisingly sweet because of the sweet corn, but a pleasant change from eating it on the cob.