Cycle 12 – Item 336
7 (Tue) December 2021
-Changgok, Sujeong, Seongnam, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea-
with the Family
Korean-Swedish Culinary Exchange (20) (see also KSCX)
In the wake of our previous exchange, I reconfirmed my long-standing intention to reduce consumption of land-based animals, to which GK proposed a few seafood dishes, among which Toast Skagen seemed most appealing.
In return, I noted that GK had never once done a seafood dish in the context of KSCX and suggested canned mackeral kimchi jjigae.
Toast Skagen is a Swedish dish. Starts with skagenröra, a salad consisting of shrimp + mayo and/or sour cream and/or crème fraiche and/or mustard + dill + salt + pepper, among other ingredients. The salad is placed on toasted bread, topped with fish roe, often served with lemon wedges. Invented in the 1950s by restaurateur Tore Wretmen, who is described on Wikipedia as “perhaps best known for introducing cooking to men in Sweden” (GK, perhaps, is part of that legacy; so would KSCX).
I used the recipe from SwedishFood.com.
Other than meatballs, this was the first dish that I’d experienced at a restaurant before trying to make it myself (see 12.112 Köttbullar med Potatismos & Sås), so I had an inkling of what to expect.
It was awesome. The sweetness of the shrimp – small ones, pre-peeled, parboiled – pairing nicely with the tanginess of the mayo + sour cream, plus a slight kick from Tabasco sauce, the zing of the fresh dill, the pop of roe, all brought together by the crispy toast. My 4th favorite dish in the history of KSCX. Better than the one at Hemlagat?
[The comments below are GK’s own words, with minor typographical edits from me.]
I’m reporting back from my adventures with making kimchi jjigae mackerel (and also the first fish-based dish of our exchange).
It’s kinda funny, that back in 2013, when I made kimchi jjigae the first time, I used falukorv, and you actually suggested (see comments at 4.069 Kroppkakor in Zucchini-Picada Cream Sauce):
“…given my current preference for fish in kimchi jjigae (e.g., canned mackerel), rather than pork, and given the renowned Swedish affinity for fish (e.g., Swedish Fish), I’d love to see GK make kimchi jjigae with a fish substitution.”
I guess I delivered on the suggestion, but only after 8 years, and after you suggested it a second time.
I tried to follow the recipe you had posted on the blog way back, only substituting pork with mackerel.
I started by frying the mackerel in the pot, followed by the kimchi, then added kimchi broth as well as some water (maybe a little less than what your recipe suggested, since I wanted a thicker broth.
I used (Danish) mackerel that had been canned together with a tomato sauce (see photos). I wouldn’t say I could taste the tomatoes that much in the final dish anyway.
In the end, I chopped up some chilies, since I have some left from my home-growing project this year and don’t want them to go bad. I guess they helped to up the spiciness of the dish. Finally I added some salt + white pepper + sugar.
The broth was really rich, with a great depth, spiciness and some sourness due to the age of the kimchi.
As side dishes I had my own home-made kimchi (the bigger, upper plate) as well as pickled perilla leaves (upper left) as well as the remaining kimchi I had gotten from a friend a while back (upper right).
All in all it was a good meal, though as I am typing this I realize I forgot to make rice! I will redeem it by making rice when I eat the remainders for lunch tomorrow though.
On my effort:
- I anticipate many potential applications for Toast Skagen: appetizer, party finger food, anju.
- Next time, I’m confident that I can elevate the dish to 4.0 by adding a bit of crisp, like minced cucumbers or shallots – and better plating.
On GK’s effort:
- I’d totally forgotten about my prior suggestion to use mackerel – troubled by memory loss, but glad that I’m consistent over the years.
- The canned mackerel that I was thinking of, the kind available in Korea (see for example 6.243 Ggongchi-Kimchi Jjigae), is totally different than the one used by GK.
- GK is right about my old recipe calling for too much water – in fact, maybe double too much (how could it be so wrong??) – I’ve revised it.
- Anyway, the kimchi jjigae looks great – looks very clean and modern; I’d imagine that the tomato sauce would add some sweetness, which can be a good thing to balance out the sourness.
- I probably would’ve added some tofu, and a sprinkle of chopped scallions.
I’m going to continue exploring Swedish seafood dishes. Gravlax, baby!
I’ll also make kimchi jjigae with canned mackerel.
For GK, I’d be curious to see something made with more of the ingredients that I sent him (BTW, I just realized that he’d sent me photos of his AHQFGT, which I’ll post soon)…
(See also BOOZE)
(See also GLOBAL FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN KOREA)