Korean Kitchen Essentials
Korean cuisine has evolved over a period of many years through an interaction of trends that are political, environmental, and cultural in nature, across Asia. Hence a Korean kitchen is stacked with tools that are used across various cultures as well. Here is a guide for reference to give you an insight about the Korean Kitchen Essentials.
A few must have Korean kitchen tools are as follows:
Good kitchen cutlery is a lifetime investment, so it is important to choose the right set of knives for your Korean kitchen. One needs to have a 6 inches to 12 inches Chef’s knife that is easy to grip and can be used to easily cut and chop due to its curved cutting surface. Another essential knife is the Paring knife that can be used to peel vegetables and to slice them. A serrated or scalloped knife can be used as a bread knife. For softer fruits like tomatoes, yet another serrated knife can be used. This is called the tomato knife. Make sure that the knife set is made of high carbon steel. It is important to have a knife sharpener as well to ensure the longevity of your cutlery.
A rice cooker is quite essential in a Korean kitchen since rice is an important part of a Korean meal. These absorb the water completely and you don’t need to worry about the rice being overheated once it is put in a rice cooker. It can be used for making bread and cake too since the steam can render flavor to the food.
Korean grill plate
Barbecue is an integral part of Korean food culture. It is an interactive activity in the community as well. The whole group helps to cut, cook, and turn the meat and you have to share the dishes as well, as there is a rare chance that you would get your own plate. The grill is a versatile equipment. A grill plate is slightly domed with a trough around for the oil to run off. The equipment is sturdy enough but cleaning it is a lot less tedious task.
A Korean kitchen must have a set of hardware that is Kimchi specific. Kimchi is a famous Korean cuisine. The preparation of the dish uses special earthenware pots called the onggi. These pots are made up of clay and are porous enough to be used for fermenting food. These can be used to preserve Kimchi, soybean paste, fish, red pepper sauce, and rice wine. These are usually huge clay jars. These days a Kimchi fridge is used for storing these jars. It is called the kimchi naengjanggo and consists of many chambers set at different temperatures for different fermentation stages or for preservation of food. A must buy for a Korean kitchen!
Stone and earthenware bowls
These bowls are used to prepare stews and soups by placing them on the stovetop and look like a saucepan-bowl hybrid. These are deep and heavy in structure and thick enough to retain heat for a long time.
The Korean spatula is designed for stirring the ingredients present in a clay pot. It is flat with rounded edges to fit the utensil. This version is much steadier than its American counterpart as it is used to stir and toss large quantities of food.
A Cleaver can be used for many purposes in Korean cooking. One can mince garlic (an essential ingredient of Korean food), cut vegetables into thin beautiful shapes and to peel fresh water chestnuts. Of course, for those who would not prefer to do it the traditional way, you could buy a meat grinder from the market to suffice the need.