Friday, August 10, 2012

Olympic Lovin' Kimchi Fried Quinoa

Knock knock. Who's there? Quinoa. Quinoa who...wait. What!? Where is rice? This is supposed to be kimchi fried rice, right!? Is this some kind of sick joke?

Nope.  It most certainly is not.

The thing is though, it's Olympics season. Which isn't all about jaw-dropping, gorgeous men in speedos breaking world records in the pool. Or sexy Europeans that make you want to chuck your citizenship in the fire and be reborn on the other side of the globe. (Err, kidding...obviously. F-yeah Amurica!)

But in all seriousness...

The Olympics is about unification. It brings together athletes from all over the world to compete on a single, universal platform through athletics. Here, countries get to show off their colors (whaddup Zhong Guo-current medal count winner!), flaunt some spirit, but also transcend politics/geography/stigmatism in camaraderie and sportsmanship. There is nothing more genuine than bonds born from the common ground of dedication, fierce determination, and competition. Every Olympic athlete is a true champion, and they all recognize that in one another.

It's one of the reasons why I love Olympic season. The unity seems to permeate even into the most local levels. Everywhere I go, people can find conversation in the Olympics, no matter if you are with mere acquaintances or barely strangers. Everyone, to some extent, is caught up in the same fervor. It's fun times.

And those swimmers...yes...these are indeed fun times. Swooooooon!

What does this have to do with my dinner tonight? Meh, nothing really. Except actually, it is EVERYTHING.  Everyone expects kimchi fried rice to, understandably, be made with rice. Rice is to Asian as water is to dolphin. But tonight, I decided to introduce the native South American seed into the traditional korean dish. HA! Two different worlds...blending of cultures...Olympics! Relevant! And it worked. It worked so, so well.

Okay so I actually added quinoa to it because I had leftover cooked quinoa and didn't want to make rice. But lets just keep things Olympic themed, shall we?

Quinoa is continuing to prove itself as a very worthy substitute for rice. And this dish was so quick and easy to make, it literally took 10 minutes. I also added an egg on top (would that count as a dash of Amurrcan into my cultural medley?) Unfortunately, I had originally wanted to add cheese too (MORE cross cultural exchange!) but completely forgot. Sadface, will have to wait until next time! Because trust me, there will most definitely be many more next times with this dish.

Now off to watch women's beach volleyball (go China)!

Difficulty: 2
Willingness to make again: 10
Over-all: 8
1) The kimchi is pretty salty, so make sure kimchi to quinoa ratio is appropriate
2) This was a very simplified version of the original recipe, primarily because I didn't have gochugang or any substitute. But it turned out fine without it. Next time though, I will be sure to have sirracha sauce
3) NEXT TIME: ADD CHEESE & TOFU & maybe some garlic? 
4) Definitely should have used FOUR instead of just 1 single egg. Too small, moops.

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