Now you’re awake, aren’t you? My colleague, Valentin, brings a smile to everyone’s face on a daily basis with his crazy outfits. That was yesterday, in the Augustiner Biergarten next door to our office, where I gathered with 5 of my colleagues for a semi-spontaneous homemade lunch. (We planned it two days prior to yesterday – spontaneously.) Now these lunches have become a lunch series, inofficially named “Lunch of Awesomeness” by Herb, another foodie colleague of mine – in the back there, with the cap on. This was lunch number two – each one entailing the participants to bring some sort of home made dish or gourmet offering. We’re quite an international crowd there – representing 5 countries – USA (me), Poland (Kinga), Romania (Valentin), Germany (Guenter and Eva) and Austria (Herb.) Yesterday was a delicious mixed bag offering of Polish celery and beet salads, an Austrian beef “salad” with pumpkin seed pesto, my spicy duck and noodle dish (granted, not very American, but yummy), fresh baguettes, chocolate mousse and strawberry quark, and a minty ice tea (which you’re not allowed to bring into the beer gardens – so Valentin served it to us after lunch back at our desks.)
The last few days and weeks really have been scorching hot, with little reprieve from the sun. Taking picnics to beer gardens helps you stay cool. And when I cook in this heat, I try to find dishes that don’t require turning on the stove or oven for very long, if possible.
I’ve been a bit addicted to Korean recipes again lately, perhaps because of my discovery of this lady’s YouTube channel. Maangchi – just a simple housewife who started putting her recipes into short videos and over time has become this huge YouTube sensation (almost 700k subscribers!). And she’s really great. In just a few minutes she inspires me to throw together nice easy Korean dishes.
A week ago, again with her as inspiration, I went and bought a huge bag of dry soybeans. You know, these:
In 5 days, you can sprout them to full-grown sprouts. You just need to keep them watered regularly and covered. Not much to it.
No special equipment needed. Those are my sprouts! Fun window-sill projects.
And what to do with said sprouts? She had a great recipe for a bi-bim-bop with sprouts (called Kongnamulbap), cooked and done in about 45 minutes.
You mix up some beef with onions and garlic and a few other ingredients (a bit of soy sauce and sesame oil mixed into the beef to further flavor it).
In a pot with the rice and sprouts – yup, all together.
Let it cook for about 20 minutes….first on high and then down at a simmer.
Mix with a “dressing” of sorts, (⅓ cup soy sauce, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1 stalk of chopped green onion, 2 ts hot pepper flakes, 1 ts honey, 1 tbs chopped onion, 1 tbs chopped green chili pepper, and 1 tbs roasted sesame seeds.) fry an egg, mix the dressing with a scoop of the beef/rice/sprout mixture and then serve. Easy, fast and reasonably healthy – especially with a salad on the side.