LAZARUS LYNCH: Who doesn’t love fried rice? I grew up eating fried rice from the Chinese restaurant down the block, but here at Hanjan in New York City, they use kimchi. Now, I love kimchi. It’s a fermented cabbage.
It kind of reminds me of a southern hot chow, or some sauerkraut, or pickles. Chef Su is going to walk me through his version of a kimchi fried rice, which he learned how to make from his hometown in South Korea.
I am super excited to take this journey with him and indulge in some kimchi fried rice. [music playing] High fives. Chef Su, Chef Dennis. I am so excited to be here at Hanjan. When did you start cooking, Chef Su? And throw everything together, and then boom, you have this for us.
I see, I don’t know, at least 10 different ingredients. They all look wonderful to me, but I’m particularly fond of this kimchi. Six weeks? Six weeks old. Is it OK to eat food that’s six weeks old? Wow, OK.
And you’re still here. You’re still standing. Kimchi is such an important part of Korean culture that you can actually judge a cook by their kimchi, and Chef Su delivers. What? This is a batch that’s been aging for about five weeks, going on six.
I am standing in front of a bucket of kimchi. And it’s like, whoa, it’s massive. You could do some weightlifting with this. Oh, yeah. Let’s start cooking, y’all. What kind of rice are we using? We use sushi rice.
I’m just trying to get as much surface on, so we roast them evenly. So, you expose all of the grains to the sides of the pan, so it gets nice and crispy. Getting as much surface as you can. Smart. So, Chef Dennis, you’re from the Philippines, actually, right? Yes, I am.
Did you grow up eating fried rice in the Philippines? Oh yeah, of course. Usually, it’s you whatever you have left over from dinner from the past night, just throw a bunch of garlic on it. I mean, who doesn’t love leftovers, right? I’m also going to season this with some fish sauce.
Fish sauce helps to excite your palate. I’m exciting my palate. That’s what I’m talking about. I wish you could smell this in here. Brisket. So, this brisket is it thinly sliced? Yeah, very thinly sliced.
It kind of looks like pastrami. Yeah, it’s about that thin. And then we throw in the Korean radish kimchi. Oh, so we’re doing kimchi two different ways. So Chef, this is actually about building flavors, layer by layer as you’re going.
This is kind of an unusual style of plating where it happens on top of the stove. I love that sound, the crisping of the rice kernels. That’s the dish. Wow, would you look at that. This is Korean comfort food done right.
Whoa. Thank you so much, Chef. Pleasure. Do you hear that sizzling sound? Oh, people. This is why I love fried rice. It’s so simple, yet so complex in the flavor. Chef Su told me that this is the kind of dish in Korea that you eat at the end of the day.
It’s a little overwhelming to have as a first course, so you have it at the end because it’s sweet, fatty, acidic. It’s a little spicy, but it’s really warming my palate because it’s just nice, and balanced, and even.
Cheers, guys. I’m in heaven.