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Appetizers

Tofu with kimchi (Dubu kimchi)

Tofu with kimchi (Dubu kimchi)
Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

The fact that we have a word in Korean, " anju," specifically for types of food that one eats with alcohol, should give a good indication of how much Koreans love to drink. The drink of choice can be mekju ... Read more

Total time: 40 minutes | Serves 4
  • 1 18-ounce package medium-firm tofu
  • Salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 onion, sliced
  • 1/4 pound pork, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon Korean chile paste (gochujang)
  • 1 1/2 cups drained and sliced kimchi
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • Toasted sesame seeds

Step 1Place the block of tofu into a medium pot. Add enough water to cover and add a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil and cook until the tofu is hot all the way through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside, leaving the tofu in the hot water.

Step 2In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and saute, stirring frequently, until just lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the pork and chile paste and continue cooking until the pork is cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the kimchi, sesame oil, soy sauce and sugar and cook until the kimchi is softened and wilted, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Step 3Drain the tofu and cut into slices. Arrange the slices on the outer rim of a large plate. Pile the cooked kimchi in the middle. Drizzle over the toasted sesame oil. Sprinkle with chopped green onions and a generous amount of toasted sesame seeds.

Step 4Serve immediately, nice and warm, as an accompaniment to soju or beer, or as a banchan (side dish) with rice.

Note: For the best flavor, use aged napa cabbage (baechu) kimchi that is at least a couple of weeks old.

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