Kimchi Chronicles Contest: Winners!

Thank you to everybody who entered the Kimchi Chronicles Video Contest! It was a blast to watch all of your videos, we truly enjoyed each and every one of them. Unfortunately, there could only be 3 winners (and a few honorable mentions), and our team of judges, consisting of Marja Vongerichten, and individuals representing CJ Foods, Dramafever, Rasa Malaysia, Hmart, and Kimchi Chronicles, had an exceptionally difficult time deciding on our favorites. After some considerable thought, we’re happy to announce our top 3 winners and honorable mentions!

First place: Magasauce with Manduguk

 A year’s supply of Hmart kimchi, a year’s subscription of DramaFever Premium, a year’s supply of CJ Bibigo Korean Pantry Set, and $100 gift certificate at

Second Place: Naru2222 with Samgyetang

Prize: Cuisinart appliance, a year’s subscription of DramaFever Premium, and a $75 gift certificate at

Third Place: Missolive1000 with Buckwheat noodles

Prize: Cuisinart appliance, a year’s subscription of DramaFever Premium, $50 gift certificate at

And for our honorable mentions:
Chomplemonde with Bindaetteok, Thesquishymonster with Yukgaejang, Jennyleehogan with Bbq pork/L.A. Kalbi, Beastmodetongan704 with Bulgogi, Gapandbuck with Grilled Chicken Sandwich

Prize: A month’s subscription of DramaFever Premium, $50 gift certificate at

Congratulations to our winners, and thanks to our contest partners for providing such great prizes! To check out all of the great videos we received, click here.


Kimchi Chronicles Contest: All of the Videos!

A big thank you to everyone who participated in our first ever Kimchi Chronicles Video Contest! Here are all of the great submissions we received, in no particular order:

thesquishymonster, pajeon

thesquishymonster, yukgaejang

thesquishymonster, grilled steak with kimchi butter

junpower010, kimchi jjigae and japchae

suburbanminimalist, tofu/ kimchi fried rice/broccoli roasted in heavy cream

lakocinera, bulgogi tacos

katsredkitchen, hotteok

samtaeguk, ginger goji georgie cocktail and bean sprout soup

missolive1000, buckwheat noodles

magasauce, manduguk

beastmodetongan704, bulgogi

gapandbuck, grilled chicken sandwich- korean cook off

naru2222, samgyetang

naru2222, jjajanggmyeon

chomplemonde, bindaetteok

foxtytat2gurl, braised chicken with buckwheat noodles

jennyleehogan, marja’s braised chicken/spicy chicken wings/onion rings

jennyleehogan, bbq pork and la kalbi

markzastrow, tteokgogi burgers

zachkowalczyk1, tteokguk

Food: Crew Lunch at Hahoe Doenjang Maeul

When filming in Andong, we did some serious damage at Hahoe Doenjang Maeul, a family-run restaurant serving up some of the best bulgogi we’ve ever eaten. The secret? Homemade doenjang (fermented soybean paste) that the Chung family has been perfecting for over 19 generations. Along with Yeon-Hee Chung, the matriach of the family, we sat down to an epic meal of bulgogi jeongol, a one-pot stew of thinly sliced beef, noodles, vegetables, and broth. This hearty dish was accompanied by fresh ssam (lettuce), and of course, copious amounts of  delicious doenjang.

Half the fun of eating jeongol lies in its preparation. It’s usually cooked right in front of you, in a large pot on one of the many portable burners gracing Korean barbeque restaurants. It’s a fun, communal dish to share with a group of friends, that’s pretty amazing by itself, but even tastier with a side of kimchi!

Additional note:

We’d like to take the time to remember Yeon-Hee Chung, who passed away recently. She ran Hahoe Doenjang Maeul for the past decade, and under her guidance, it became the wonderful success that it is today. Best wishes to her family and friends. She will be greatly missed.

To learn about the other places we visited in Andong, read on here. You can also find some great jeongol recipes on Taste of Korea. For even more about Hahoe Doenjang Maeul by checking out Episode 6: The Beef Chronicles >>

Around Seoul: Namsan Tower Locks

Locks are an international symbol of love. From the banks of the Arno in Florence to Namsan Tower (N Seoul Tower) in Seoul, it’s a widely recognized custom for couples to attach padlocks to public fixtures and throw away the keys to show their love for each other.

At Namsan Tower, home to some of Seoul’s choicest views, the surrounding fences are covered with thousands of locks, of every different shape, size, and color. Akin to throwing a penny into a fountain, each lock has someone different behind it with his or her own story. Locking your love for that special someone in such a beautiful and historic part of the city? Pretty memorable, if you ask us.

Check out our guide to Seoul for more of our favorite sights here >>

Guest Recipes: Beyond Kimchee’s Bindaetteok

We’re very excited to announce the launch of a new series on the Kimchi Chronicles blog! Each week, we’ll be featuring some great Korean recipes from writers all over the blogosphere. We’ll make it our goal to supply you with the internet’s freshest Korean dishes. For our inaugural post, Holly from Beyond Kimchee is sharing her take on the Kimchi Chronicles bindaetteok recipe, complete with step by step instructions and beautiful photos.

Holly’s Bindaetteok

I was asked to make a dish using one of the recipes in the Kimchi Chronicles, so here I am, presenting a wonderful savory mung bean pancakes recipe called bindaetteok. Although this dish used to be considered as poor man’s fare, it’s an undeniable favorite with Koreans of every social class. It might have started as a humble dish for commoners butthe flavor is as rich as the Queen of England! I adapted Mrs. Rhee’s bindatteok recipe in the Kimchi Chronicles cookbook, with a few tweaks to make it my own.

Mung beans are tiny, whole green-colored beans.  I recommend using split mung beans; their skins have already been removed, revealing a delicate yellow bean. You can find these easily in any Asian grocery store.

For the bindaetteok:

2 cups dried split mung beans, rinsed in a few change of water
1/4 cup short grain rice, rinsed
1/3 lb minced pork
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 1/2 cups fermented kimchi, chopped
4 oz mung bean sprout, blanched and squeezed to remove moisture.
3 oz  Korean wild fern, sliced, optional
1/2 cup kimchi juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Green/red chilies for garnish, optional

For the dipping sauce:

1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
2 Tablespoon rice vinegar


Combine mung beans and rice in a large bowl. Add cold water and soak for at least 6 hours (up to 24) in the fridge. Drain and rinse them. Set aside.

This is Korean wild fern. You can omit this if you can’t find it.

Blanch mung bean sprouts in boiling water  for 1 minute and squeeze gently with both hands to remove some moisture.

Chop your very fermented kimchi and set aside.

Season minced pork with garlic, salt and pepper and mix well.

Put the beans and rice in the blender and process with 1/4 cup water. Add 1/2 cup kimchi juice for the blade to turn and stir a bit, so it can all can blend easily. Do not over puree, it should be coarsely smooth. Pour the mixture in a large mixing bowl.

Mix in all the ingredients in the bowl.

Add soy sauce, salt and pepper and mix well.

Heat a  generous amount of oil in the skillet over medium heat and and spread 2-3 tablespoonful of batter for each pancake.

Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side until the pancake is brown and crisp. Add more oil if the pan seems dry.

As a garnish, place a few chiles if you like.


Yum, yum, yum! Many Koreans eat these pancakes with soju, but they go just as well with a cold glass of Coke. Just like any savory pancakes, this should be eaten immediately when it’s hot. They get tough once they’ve cooled down. As always, serve with dipping sauce!









Check out Holly’s blog here. Photo credit: Beyond Kimchee >>

We’re always looking for new, exciting content here at Kimchi Chronicles. Got a food blog with some tasty Korean dishes? Give us a heads up at

Food: Gejang

A memorable snack we ate in Korea was gejang, a famous Korean dish of marinated raw crabs. The crabs are soaked in soy sauce and chili peppers, and then left to sit and pickle for days until just the right amount of fermented. One of the best places in Seoul to get your gejang fix is Pro Ganjang Gejang, a beyond famous Korean restaurant run by Mrs. Baek-Ja Seo. At this establishment, the gejang is intensely flavorful, spotlighting Mrs. Seo’s signature marinade of soy sauce, chili pepper, and little else. After feasting on some delicious crab, she showed us how to eat the leftover roe mixed with rice and marinade for a second, incredibly satisfying helping.

Her delicious soy marinated crabs are second to none, but Marja‘s got a great recipe in her cookbook that cuts the preparation time in half. Her secrets? Fresh live crabs from Hmart. Then, steaming the crabs in advance and marinating the crab overnight. The recipe also features a simple soy marinade that is not only incredibly tasty, but very versatile–it would be equally good with another protein, such as chicken or salmon.

Happy cooking!

To check out Pro Ganjang Gejang, be sure to watch Episode 8: The Seoul Food Chronicles.

5 Questions or Less: Virginie Danglades

Virgine Danglades is an accomplished editor who prior to working on Kimchi Chronicles, edited for a diverse array of TV projects, from food programs, reality TV shows, to game shows. Some highlights on her resume include Bravo’s Celebrity Poker Showdown, PBS documentary Child Brides, Stolen Lives, among many more. In addition to TV, she’s worked with independent filmmakers editing narrative shorts and feature films. In short, Danglades knows what editing is all about. She calls herself versatile, and to us, that sounds like a profound understatement. Kimchi Chronicles wouldn’t be what it is without her hard work.

As an editor for Kimchi Chronicles, what kinds of responsibilities did your job include?

As an editor you’re fulfilling the last stage of the production process – crafting the show to its final shape. The initial steps are to establish the style in which the content is presented, to set the look and rhythm of the segments, and set the overall pace of the show. The key to doing this is to have a clear understanding of the intention of the producers and know the initial vision for the project. Things change as you start editing but these are essential starting points. My responsibility is also to communicate well with the assistant editors so we have a fluid and collaborative work flow.

If you were to travel to Korea in the upcoming future, what would be on your must eat list?

I’d head straight to Sokcho and have a feast of grilled shellfish and seafood!

You first began working on Kimchi Chronicles post filming in Korea. What’s the secret to editing content you’re not familiar with?

Making discoveries is  one of the beauties of editing. Looking at the footage with fresh eyes is exciting. You soak in the information in a raw kind of way. It can be A LOT of information and you let the footage transport you to the locations and the people, simultaneously making mental notes of the shots that you like and  how you might put a scene together.

As someone new to Korean food and culture, what are some things that surprised you about Kimchi Chronicles?

I was blown away by how beautiful the country is. The countryside, the mountains, the islands, the cities. I was also fascinated by the food and the cuisine which I knew nothing about except for kimchi! I didn’t even know that  there were thousand different kinds of kimchi! This was overall very surprising and appetizing to me. Now when I see a KyoChon fried chicken restaurant in New York City, I’m there!

What do you love about editing, and what are some of your upcoming projects?

Editing is alchemy. You throw  images, music, sounds, narration, and dialogue into a hot cauldron.. and make a cohesive, dramatic, entertaining piece out of it all. It’s always fresh and creative. It’s always challenging artistically.  I am always amazed by the end result and most of the time, very pleased with it. To stay true to my claim of being a versatile editor, I am currently working on a documentary series  airing on Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network. The series is called Our America with Lisa Ling and it is everything that I mentioned above.

Drinking Culture: Soju


While in Korea, we took advantage of the country’s fun drinking culture and nightime camaraderie. Koreans love to celebrate a day’s hard work by indulging in various kinds of local alcohol, from soju to plum wine, makgeolli (rice wine) and more.

Soju, a distilled rice liquor,  is probably one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in Korea. It is clear and colorless, drawing comparisons to vodka. However, the taste is thought to be slightly sweeter, and is consumed without mixers. The largest manufacturer is the  Jinro brand, which has been producing soju for over 85 years. Its popular Chamisul soju, which is filtered four times with charcoal made from Korean bamboo, is a Korean best seller.

After a few nights out, we quickly learned that there  there are a few golden rules when it comes to drinking in Korea. First off, it’s atypical to fill your own glass. Instead, you should politely fill another person’s and vice versa. Another important guideline is that you absolutely must use two hands to pour a drink for anyone older than you.

We also discovered a fun new drinking game. Our friend Jennifer Flinn, a food blogger and Marja’s occasional dinner date, taught us a game where you pass the bottle cap around the table and everyone has to flick the loose metal with their finger. Whoever gets it to fly off has to take a shot. Or was it that everyone else  has to take a shot? Hmmm….our memory’s a little fuzzy.

Kimchi Chronicles in Korea

We’ve got some exciting news to share today. Kimchi Chronicles has finally hit TV screens in Korea! You can find it on the Olive Channel. Tell your friends, relatives, and neighbors! If you’re a fan from Korea, we hope you’ll watch it too!

It’s English and Korean viewer friendly, with handy subtitles!

Happy holidays,

The Kimchi Chronicles Family


Kimchi Chronicles Holiday Gift Guide

There’s only five short days left until Christmas, and if you’re like us, there is still some last-minute holiday gift shopping to do. Here’s a few special items we think would be great under any Christmas tree.

For the technology fiend:

Samsung MV800 Digital Camera, $195 (Amazon):

Capture all those special holiday memories with the Samsung MV800 digital camera. It’s sleek, impossibly thin and ultrachic. The cutting edge adjustable LCD screen tilts from 0 to 180 degrees to get the best shot possible. It’d be ideal to snap beautiful photos of some delicious Korean meals too!



For the kitchenware connoisseur:


Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler, $75 (Amazon):

This 5-in-1 Griddler is the epitome of functional and versatile kitchen tool. It’s a contact grill, panini press, full grill, griddle, and half grill/griddle. The possibilities are endless. Kalbi and bulgogi lovers, look no further.




For the kimchi lover:


Kimchi, Prices vary (Hmart)

Is there such thing as too much kimchi? Surprise your kimchi fan with the best gift of all, a generous supply of our favorite spicy side dish that will last them a lifetime (or at least a few months…) Check out a few more awesome holiday options on Hmart’s holiday page.




For the high rolling world traveler:


Flight to Korea, Starts at $1,495 (Korean Air)

The ultimate present for a world traveler? A round trip to Korea, of course. Give that lucky someone the unforgettable chance to experience Korea, and its delightful culture and cuisine.

For the Kimchi Chronicles biggest fan:


Kimchi Chronicles Combined DVD and Book set, $38.99 (Hmart)

If that special someone doesn’t already have the Kimchi Chronicles cookbook and DVD set, then why delay? Get both at a deeply discounted price.