When I saw these Korean Hotdogs in this months BBC Good Food Magazine I knew I had to give them a go. First of all, I already had all the non-supermarket ingredients, the rice wine vinegar, the gochujang and a really nice 6 month old kimchi, but also because they completely epitomise what I love about Korean food and, by extension, Korean people. Yes, Korea has a rich cuisine of their own that is steeped in traditional dishes that are unlike anything else, but when it comes to Fusion Cuisine, the Koreans are totally DTF, (down to fuse). Nobody does it like them! There are many countries who are so protective about their culinary heritage that you darn’t mess with it. Wasn’t it only a year ago or so when Jamie Oliver received death threats from Spain for adding chorizo to a paella?
The Korean peninsula has had a tragic and literally wartorn history. It has been torn into North and South with the South, previously being the country’s breadbasket, hurdling itself rapidly into the 21st century. They’ll take dishes from all over the world and make them their own by smacking them with a big kiss of chilli or a melting pile of doenjang or their beloved national dish of kimchi. I think this has a lot to do with the American presence in South Korea which spawned their love of Americana. As the U.S. is the (self-proclaimed) melting-pot, its culture and food is influenced by many others, giving Americans, and hence South Koreans, a taste for the native foods of the immigrants to arrive on American shores. I’ve seen Korean takes on all sorts of foreign dishes like affogato, the Italian dessert of vanilla ice-cream in hot espresso but the Koreans add some sweetened sweet potato puree to it, Korean Cesar salad with gochujang in the dressing, gochujang sloppy joes, Korean pizza, Korean tacos and Korean disco/taco fries. But the most famous Korean fusion dish, or fusion dish period is Korean KFC – pieces of chicken that are dredged in seasoned flour, double fried and then covered in a spicy, sticky, red, gochujang sauce making the chicken crunchy and sticky at the same time. So when I saw the recipe for Korean Hotdogs, it just completely made sense in a way that French Hotdogs, for example, just wouldn’t.
- 1 carrot, sliced into julienne matchsticks
- half a tsp of fine salt
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- 1 spring onion, thinly sliced
- 120 g kimchi chopped
- 3 tbsp mayonaise
- 1 - 2 tbsp gochujang
- hald a tsp of honey
- 1 splash of rice wine vinegar
- 4 hotdog buns
- 4 hotdogs
- Slice the carrot and add it to a bowl with the salt. Toss together to coat the carrot and set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. The carrot will start to leach out water and soften in texture.
- In a bowl or jug, combine the mayonnaise, honey, rice wine vinegar and gochujang and mix well.
- Then cook the hotdogs according to the packet instructions.
- The assemble by opening up the buns, inserting a hotdog into each, dividing the kimchi between each, drizzling over the spicy mayo, scattering over the carrot and sprinkling over the sesame seeds and spring onions.