Dolsot Bibimbap

I love trying new things and sharing the experiences. Today we tried a new to us, Korean restaurant that has over 1300 YELP reviews with an average of 4 stars. The restaurant was called Jang Su Jang. Click on the name to see the yelp review for yourself.

One of the perks of living in a multi-cultural community is being able to meet fascinating people and to enjoy delicious and authentic tasting foods from around the world. Being always curious about people and loving food as sustenance and as a form of art, I love living in Silicon Valley. My waistline, not so much. Oh well, fat and happy isn’t such a bad thing! 😉  At least for this week. There always seems to be a reason to celebrate life and who am I to say no to a “party.”  And I did get a hike in with ML before partaking in the festivities so maybe the calories expended equalled the calories consumed?? A girl can dream!

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I loved the entire lunch process. When we were first seated, we were served warm tea in glass tumblers. This was new to me. We looked over the menu and we both picked the same entree – Dolsot Bimimbap. This is a rice dish topped w/ vegetables, beef, & optional red pepper paste, served in a hot stone bowl, where the rice sticks to the bottom and becomes crispy. The food and bowl is served so hot, that it cooks the egg in the bowl once you stir everything together.

Before the entrée arrived, we were served soup and as we ate the soup, the kimchi assortment arrived.  Just seeing the 8 little silver bowls set out on the table was like a surprise, not really knowing what was being served in front of us.  We have had Korean food before and know that this is part of the meal service, we just never really know what we are eating.  One bowl had some type of tiny cooked shrimp with the head and body still attached, shells and all. Another bowl had apples and onions in a creamy sauce, sort of like a Korean version of a Waldorf salad. I loved the glass noodles and the traditional Korean kimchi and enjoyed trying all of them. The waitress came by and asked us if we wanted refills on any of the dishes and was happy to see that we liked the food.

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When the entrée arrived, I took pictures of the food, like I usually do because I love food and wanted to share a meal with you. 🙂  It was too pretty not to share.

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Another waiter came by and told me I had to stir everything together quickly before the rice stuck to the bottom. This is my favorite part, so I wasn’t too much in a hurry. He offered to help me, and I obliged his wishes. I have had bibimbap before, just not here.  He added the spicy red paste to my dish and walked away so that I could enjoy my lunch.

It was another fun and fabulous lunch date and I left full and thankful.

What foods do you like to try? Are you an adventurous eater?  Got any good restaurant recommendations in the Bay Area? I’m always up for a food party!

namaste

Trying New Things

I gave a presentation tonight about the journey of becoming an expatriate and a repatriate.  I had an outline and food and props and shared my story with women who are great friends, which made for a comfortable audience. Most of the women had followed along with me through my blog and knew the highlights and virtually joined me on our one year adventure abroad.

So I decided to share the feelings and stories behind the story, kind of a behind the scenes version of the tour.  I think they liked it, as they asked me to share another story, a version 2, another time. This made me very happy, as I am generally uncomfortable presenting to an audience and feel like I talk too much. 

I shared what it was like to make the decision to move to another country. I talked about all the gritty details of the transitions and getting us out the door and into a new home in the Netherlands and back again.  I shared the sad goodbyes, the anxious arrivals, the settling in, the exploration, and the return to our homeland.

I shared the lessons learned, both positive and negative.

What I learned, is that a year goes by very quickly, faster than you really think. It’s important to try new things and to not let our fears stop us from experiencing life. I think that we can do anything we set our minds to do, and that if we want something, really want something, and set a goal, we can do anything for a month, or maybe even a year or two or three. It’s not forever and we have so much to experience and try, if we trust our heart and not our fears.

And so I challenged the brave ones to come up and try some salty, Dutch licorice powder. This was a heavenly treat for me growing up, and one that I loved and used to prank my friends, just to see their reactions
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They were good sports and I had a good laugh!!  I don’t think they liked it much, but I was sure proud of them for trying!!

Life is good, my friends! Live it up, love it out and enjoy your precious time on this great, big planet.  xo

Trying New Things

How do you keep life exciting? What do you do that makes life fun?

I’m always looking for new things to try, rearrange, and explore. I never want to be bored. How about you?

Today I had fun playing with our new Vitamix 5200. Think of a blender on steroids with several speed variables, with the highest levels spinning so fast that the friction causes the contents in the carafe to heat up after several minutes. This is a cool new toy for the whole family to enjoy.

I made tortilla soup with tomatoes, a red pepper, carrots, cilantro, chicken, rice, garlic, onions, lime and cumin with salt and pepper to taste. I just threw in everything I had and in 10 minutes I has warm, delicious, healthy and savory soup!

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When I picked up Juliana from school, we made a date with the Vitamixer. We headed to Sprouts to pick up fresh and frozen smoothie ingredients. Our after school snack was also a cooking experiment and entertainment.

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It’s the little things in life that make me happy.

Tomorrow we’ll try milkshakes!

What is something new you have tried or started lately?