If there’s something I truly enjoy, it’s crossing cultures and cuisines.
Fusion cooking receives so much slack. Typically the execution isn’t well done or the idea itself is a giant flop. I think the word “fusion” has such a bad reputation…but it doesn’t have to be that way! There are so many more great restaurants that have done a great job and marrying conflicting cuisines and somehow making it work, some of my favourites being Ancora (Japanese/Peruvian), Kissa Tanto (Japanese/Italian), Kogi Food Truck (Korean/Mexican), PiDgin (Korean/French). I am a fan.
I really enjoy dabbling with ingredients native to certain cultures and cuisines and using them in different applications or non-traditional dishes. I’ve done this before with my miso cookies and gochujang spaghetti and my Korean gochujang chili is no exception. I take the sweet and spicy Korean hot pepper paste and stir that into a hearty chili which adds sweetness and just the perfect amount of heat. It really elevates the dish and the sweetness from the gochujang really works well with the smokiness of this chili. I actually can’t wait to make this again.
KOREAN GOCHUJANG CHILI - serves 4 - 6
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 white onion, diced
1/2 head garlic, minced
2 tsps gochugaru
1/2 lb ground beef
1 (28.5 oz) can whole tomatoes
1 (5.5 oz) can tomato paste
2 cups vegetable stock
1/3 cup gochujang
1 tbsp fish sauce
few dashes of liquid smoke
2 cups dried red kidney beans, soaked overnight
2 tsps chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp Spanish smoked paprika
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 bay leaf
3 tbsp kosher salt, adjust to taste
freshly ground black pepper
3 stalks scallions, sliced
toasted sesame seeds and additional sliced scallions for garnish (optional)
In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add in your onions, garlic and gochugaru and saute until softened, about 3 minutes.
Add in your ground beef and brown.
Pour in the tomatoes and crush with a potato masher. Stir in the tomato paste, gochujang and vegetable stock. Once everything is well-mixed, add in your fish sauce, liquid smoke, red kidney beans, chili powder, smoked parika, oregano, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and lower the heat down to low. Simmer for atleast 2 hours, mixture should be thick and fiery red.
Before serving, mix in the scallions and serve with additional sliced scallions on top.