Sunday, November 18, 2007

Putt Putt

Like a little schoolboy, as soon as the WoW servers came online last week Tuesday after patch 2.3, Bug ran to the vendor, bought his hula doll, and put his engineering mastery to use to make the newly available turbo-charged flying machine.

Yes, the hula doll is on the dashboard as you can see...

It sputters (?hydrocarbons) and gasps on liftoff, and may look rickety with an occasional mid-air idle, but it's an extremely fast flying machine.

Bug & I

Friday evening, we went out to eat at Seoul Restaurant. There was a different young guy working behind the counter. Still an extremely polite, cute, and very young 1st gen Korean.

As I was glossing over the menu, my eyes kept wandering over to the bulgogi, but I was determined to get something new. In the past, we've ordered the dinner for two - mandu (appetizer), bulgogi (main dish), and ice cream/fruit (dessert) for $25.

Bulgogi is my favorite Korean dish. Thinly sliced beef marinated in a slightly sweetened soy sauce with sesame, grilled, and oh-so-tender. With English choir gospel playing in the background, it inspired me to order the kim chee soup; the name has slipped my mind. In the description, it said, kim chee, meat, and noodles. I figured, "Meh, how could this possibly go wrong?" so I ordered it. Bug ordered bulgogi. We also ordered a huge platter of mandu.

There were two other parties in the restaurant, both spoke only Korean. This always makes me happy...or more like reassurance that it's not craptastic Korean food.

Waiting for our food, I'd forgotten about the large picture of Jesus hanging from the wall. Interspersed along the walls are newspaper reprints about the restaurant and taped white copy paper with marker-scribbled Korean script, presumably advertising dishes.

While we were waiting for our food, Bug and I were talking about "the game." He was quite excited about getting a belt earlier in the day.

Our big platter of mandu arrived. This time, the dumplings were fried 'til it formed a dark brown crust. Oooh, perfection! The sauce here is great. It's a thick soy sauce base, with crushed chili peppers and sesame. After eating 4 meaty dumplings, my mouth was tingling a little. I had two more dumplings left and was saving it until the rice arrived.

A few minutes later, our 8 side dishes and two steel bowls of rice arrived. The side dishes consisted of kim chee'ed sliced cucumbers, cabbage, and daikon triangles in separate dishes; julienne carrots and daikon in a very light and sweetened vinegar (almost Vietnamese style); bean sprouts in sesame and chili oil; fried tofu, red and green bell peppers in sesame oil; choi sum in soy sauce and chili peppers; and dried sardines with chili peppers. After a nibble of each of the dishes, my mouth was tingling constantly. My favorites this time around were the fried tofu in oil and the choi sum. The fried tofu was soft and tasty, with a mellow sesame flavor, while the fresh choi sum had a slight crunch and crisp dark green flavor.

Bug's bulgogi arrived. And then I heard what sounded like a bubbling cauldron approaching. The young guy was carefully carrying a little earthen pot. My god, as I peered over the edge as he set the soup down before me, I saw angrily boiling red. I waited a couple of minutes, and it was still gurgling!

I mixed the bubbling soup to investigate what I had ordered. I came across a piece of mochi! I put the molten piece of mochi in my mouth. My eyes instantly watered as my mouth began to drip from my face.

It was a little hot...

The soup consisted of kim chee, mochi, tofu, chili peppers, pieces of meat, more kim chee, onions, and bamboo shoot slivers. I took my first sip. The soup was HOT! Like...peppery hot!

The side dishes would be of no solace - despite the majority being cold - just more kindling to stoke the flames! GAH! The daikon and carrot slivers caught me eye, so I greedily ate those to smolder the flames. It worked! I took another sip of my soup with a piece of cabbage and the flames erupted again.

Midway through the meal, I began to cough up phlegm from the deep recesses of my lungs, it was great!

Halfway home, with the still-hot soup in a container on my lap, my mouth was still burning. I thought, "Wow! I can't wait to return and try another hot pot concoction!"

- Cassaendra

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