I know that, for most people in the country, September is still summer. Not so in Alaska. Gardens and flowers are in their last days. Gloves are necessary for the morning trek to the bus stop. And we'll have snow before the end of the month.
Which means it's a perfect time to shove the summer recipes into mothballed crates under the bed and pull out the winter comfort foods. I've been considering stews lately, like spending whole afternoons staring out the window thinking about which stock to use - the rosemary and red wine, the onion base, or the tomato? My seven year old went in another direction. He wanted beef, specifically beef tails (ox tails, per the olde school labeling at the butcher), specifically Korean Ox Tail Soup.
It's called Kkori Gomtang and it's perfect for cold days. It does take a couple of days to make, unless you wake up reaaaaally early in the morning and don't eat dinner until midnight.
salt and pepper
(I added that picture so you could see how simple the prep is, and also to show off my favorite knife. Love ya, little Katana)
THIS recipe for the soup and THIS recipe for accompaniment kimchi (which we may have accidentally dropped into our soup bowls because we seem to always be doing that as well). That's a quick kimchi recipe, so there's a little less tang to it if you eat it fresh. The tang comes from the fermentation process, as do the naturally occurring probiotics, so you might want to go for a more mature kimchi, but plan ahead for that. Oh, or buy it from the store.
The cooking process is simple. The results are rich and satisfying. If you're worried about whether your family's western palate might have trouble with this, consider the simplicity of the ingredients and maybe tone down the amount of chili you add to the kimchee. Or eat it when it's fresher. The soup itself should appeal to anyone who enjoys fall-off-the-bone beef or wild game.