Friday, 10 September 2010

Chamchi jjigae, Korean comfort food

I'm at home as I write this, getting better but sick and have been for the past 36 hours. Of course I can't take the day off work - my employers really don't like that to the extent that they sometimes send out emails telling us that even if we are sick we must go to work.

I have a cold, not flu. I'm not dying but still it's never a nice feeling is it. I am convinced that my students have passed it onto me once again. They openly sneeze and cough without covering their mouths no matter how much I tell them off. I find their hygiene awareness disappointingly bad. Some of my students even need to be reminded by me to wash their hands after using the bathroom.

Right now I am eating my wife's Chamchi jjigae (참치찌개) which is a dish you can find available on many many street corners. My wife didn't really cook much before we started dating but she now cooks more and more and is getting better. Her Chamchi jjigae is my favourite. It's not too difficult to make but you need the right kimchi, which we get from my mother in law. My wife makes it without tofu. What is Chamchi jjigae? My wife's is basically tuna, kimchi, water, leeks and sometimes chilli peppers plus some secret seasoning which she doesn't know the English translation for. It really hits the spot and hopefully will help me feel better. You know Summer is ending when you get a cold like this.

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