28 (Fri) January 2011
Yuni Jjajang Myeon
-Oksu, Seongdong, Seoul, Korea-
with the Family
The yuni (유니) variation of jjajang myeon involves ground pork/beef and minced onions, resulting in a smoother sauce, as opposed to the typical chunkier sauce that consists of chopped ingredients. Maybe because the chef has to make it to order, as opposed to just using the base sauce that’s been sitting in a large cauldron since morning, the yuni usually tastes better, a bit “fresher.” Usually costs a bit more, around 6,000 won compared to 4,000 at most neighborhood delivery joints, usually worth the extra charge.
By the 23rd meal of the Cycle 2, which is aiming to feature 365 unique items, I’ve already eaten a lot of standbys and common dishes that will surely come up again, not always by choice. Jjajang myeon, for example, is not only the Korean equivalent of pizza or burgers in the States, but it’s also my personal all-time favorite dish, so it will be nearly impossible to avoid within the next 342 days. Still, so long as I can continue to present legitimate variations on theme, I believe that the spirit of Cycle 2 will be upheld.
The reason that I ordered jjajang-myeon this evening, even though I could’ve ordered something else, is that I’m flying tomorrow to a remote island in Japan for a 2-day camping trip. Back in college, when I flew round-trip at least twice a year between Korea and the States during vacations, I would always have a good meal on the day before departure, just in case the plane went down. Lately, I’d given up the practice, but I was reminded of it when I learned that we would be taking one of those twin-propellor planes. The plane company requested each of us to disclose our individual body weights and insisted that each passenger be limited to 15 kg of luggage, all to make sure that the plane could handle the weight. To make matters worse, snow is predicted for tomorrow. To make matters worse, a fucking volcano erupted yesterday in the general vicinity of our destination. When I spoke to the travel agency this afternoon and asked if the volcano would be a problem for us, he said, “it shouldn’t be a problem.”
If it turns out not to be a problem, GMTD looks forward to the first post from a foreign land. If it does turn out to be a problem, at least I will have had jjajang myeon as my final meal.