Woo Her Back with Calamari Kimchi Salad
May 12, 2006
I have a friend who's a famous musician, especially famous in the cowfunk & punkfolk world. Let's call him Pappa G or G Rogue if you prefer. Back in the day, this friend was scorned by the most beautiful girl in the entire junior high school. Her parents happened to be Korean and, thank the Lord, they happened to make the most delicious kimchi from napa cabbage they grew in the garden. I won't go into the details of Pappa G's ousting, but let's just say you should never pull your eyes taught and bow in front of your Korean girlfriend's traditional parents.
Pappa G shrugs it off like it was a childish fling, but so deep runs the wound that 30 years later the scars rear their ugly heads. Recently he was looking for a recomendation on Japanese horror films. I recommended he see Chan-Wook Park's Old Boy even though it's neither Japanese nor horror. It's powerful film making and one of my favorite films of 2003. G Rogue's review of the film was less than shining. Like it was Chan-Wook Park's fault he was shunned by Jenny? That's her American name.
Don't be a hater, woo her back with your deep knowledge of the Korean kitchen. Here's the plan:
Step 1: Go to classmates.com and do a search for both her American and Korean names.
Step 2: Invite her and the new husband for lunch on a day when you know he'll be working. For instance, Tuesday.
Step 3: Go find yourself some homemade kimchi. It has to be fresh and crunchy, no imports. I get mine from the Korean farmer at Union Square's Greenmarket. In no circumstances should you attempt to make your own kimchee. You are not Korean no matter how many Southeast Asian films you see.
Step 4: Serve a chilled bottle of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc with lunch and have extra in the fridge. The spicy salad will make her hot and thirsty and that's hot. As long as you don't mention your case of yellow fever, you're golden.
Step 5: Second date, take her and the hubby to see Chinjeolhan Geumjassi, impress her with your knowledge of Korean cinema and she'll be that weird starch jelly stuff in your hands. The Ex will be picking up the kids on weekends and you'll be waving from behind the screen door in no time.
Calamari Kimchi Salad
1 pound of fresh squid (not previously frozen) cut into rings, steamed in white wine, salt and peppercorns for no more than 100 seconds
1 cup fresh homemade Korean kimchi cut into thin strips1/2 cup of basil leaves sliced lengthwise
Juice of 1 lime
2 Tbs Greek or Southern Italian olive oil
Salt to taste, but go easy because kimchee is generally quite salty
Garnish with lime zest and lime wheel
Toss ingredients while listening to Hot Chocolate's I Believe in Miracles or anything with Rick James and Tina Marie. Let the salad rest in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours and bring close to room temperature before serving. You're the man Big G.