SXSW: Making a delicious Korean dinner, Austin style, for Windy City!

When Mark and I lived in Seoul, South Korea a few years back, we befriended an incredible group of Korean musicians who play in the popular Korean reggae band: Windy City. They have heart, soul, talent and are definitely the kindest people I have ever met. So kind we decided to offer our home during their stay in ATX for the SXSW Music Festival.

I do cook Korean food; fusion, healthy, and homemade kimchi style dishes that mimic authentic Korean cuisine. I had been told there were two Korean chefs in the group and couldn’t wait to get busy in the kitchen with them. However, due to the madness of SXSW and it being impossible to work around everyone’s schedule, I took it upon myself to make this dinner happen.

While Windy City hit up some local Austin music stores, Mark and I headed to our Korean market to get galbi (beef), sam gyup sal (thick bacon), tons of veggies:) and white rice. Several ingredients of which we never cook with at home. But, there is a time and place–I firmly believe–to indulge. This night was the night. Korean BBQ here we go!

The dinner would be reminiscent of a traditional Korean meal focusing on two key factors:

  1. The food itself would yield one main dish (the BBQ), a soup (Kimchi Chigae), sticky white rice and a couple Korean side dishes (beans sprouts and fermented daikon radish.)
  2. The food would emit a sense of love, presence, familial vibe and nourishment.

I had informed the group that my “Chigae” was going to be a bit different — more veggie centered and would offer a healthy spin.

We ate, laughed, relaxed, ate some more, and felt wonderfully full. I actually got a standing ovation for my rice and soup!!! They said I cooked with my mind and heart and you know what, I did! I put love into my food and was mindful about keeping it as simple as possible while providing dynamic flavors–a way of cooking that I learned of while living in Korea.

To my friends that are now on a train to Toronto for two shows and then flying back to Korea, I leave you with this: Thank you for sharing your energy and light with me. Thank you for bringing great music to Austin. And thank you for being one with our home.

Gam sa ham ni da and annyeong he que say yo!

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