Koreatown by Deuki Hong and Matt Rodbard

9780804186131Koreatown is unlike any other Asian cookbook because it is composed of experiences of both the authors and those who frequently indulge in Korean food. Chef Deuki and Matt wanted to give the Korean food enthusiasts and the home cooks a look inside the Korean culture, what exactly makes Korean food so darn addictive, and how to prepare authentic Korean dishes at home.

Koreatown has by far been my favorite cookbook to read because not only does it effectively teach you how to make Korean dishes at home, but it shines a light on Korean culture. I loved reading the headnotes because I got to understand the history and the origins of the recipe—like bedtime stories, but for the appetite instead of sleep. Although informative, the headnotes were really personal which made it easier for me to connect to cuisine and culture even more, and made it easier for me to tackle the dishes in my kitchen even though I had to chase down a few ingredients unbeknownst to me.

Some of the recipes were easier to prepare than others due to lengthy lists of ingredients, however, when I sat down to try some of the recipes I made, I truly understood the necessity for the ingredients and how the complemented each other. Toasted rice ice cream is a must to make first because it is so simple to make, and no eggs and heat are required. It’s really quick and a new favorite treat of mine; and even if you don’t want to recreate the recipes from this book at home, the pictures alone are worth your time.

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