2 (Sat) April 2011
Grilled Lamb Chops
at Aliman Auto Camp Site
-Chuncheon, Gangwon, Republic of Korea-
w MtG, CBD
With the coming of spring, and the ever-increasing popularity of camping in Korea, and the celebrity of some of our members in the camping community, we were contacted by KBS (one of the national networks) to film a segment for a cultural program on TV. They dropped in with a camera crew and a young family of novice campers – father, mother, toddler – to engage in a brief semi-scripted exchange: the veterans showing the newbies how things are done. Although food wasn’t specifically in the script, the producers saw the lamb chops that I had been preparing and suddenly decided to work it in, probably due to the novelty of eating lamb, along with the visual appeal of grilled bone-in chops over live coals in my VHS portable grill. I didn’t want to be on camera, though my hands might’ve been filmed during the cooking process, so LHS took the lead role.
The dialogue went something like:
LHS: “Please, try some lamb. It is very good.”
Mother: “Wow, this is so tasty! A very unique flavor! What gave you the idea to make lamb?”
LHS: “We usually eat beef and pork like everyone else, but sometimes we seek more unconventional foods, like lamb. It’s especially good with Tapatio Hot Sauce.”
Mother: “I see. Thank you for the yummy food and the words of wisdom. We hope to learn from your example.”
I realize that it sounds fake, like something from a poorly dubbed kung fu movie, but that’s almost verbatim.
The lamb turned out exquisite. Eschewing published recipes, most of which called for spices that I either didn’t have (e.g., marjoram) or don’t like (e.g., cloves), I tossed in a bunch of seasonings at random, including worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, lemon zest, red wine vinegar, vermouth, thyme, garlic powder, celery powder, cayenne, salt, black pepper, white pepper, sugar. The worcestershire and thyme came through, but it all worked to provide a savory/sweet/spicy flavor profile, enhanced by hints of charred smokiness. The Tapatio added a bit of kick. I’m tempted to rate this 4.0, but without extensive experience cooking or eating lamb I can’t confidently state that the dish exemplified perfection. Everyone else seemed to enjoy it, too, though maybe not the newbie family, despite what they said on camera.
(For more details re food, see WHAT)
(For more details re venues, see WHERE IN KOREA)
(For additional details re camping, see CAMPING SITES)