Cheesy Spicy Rice Cake and Korean Fried Chicken – Ajuker Coquitlam

Ah, Wednesday! Just a few more days before the weekends!

My mom and her friend are here in town, visiting from Indonesia. There are two things that led me to taking them to the restaurant I’m gonna showcase to you today:

1. From day 1, my mom has been “nagging” that I have not brought her to have some Korean fried chicken that she likes
2. These 2 ajummas have been watching Twenty Again, and ended up craving for some 떡볶이/tteokbokki/Korean spicy rice cake.

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My friend offered to take them around, after work, to see the city lights and views from all over town. So we decided to have dinner before our night time drive session. What would be best to feed these ajummas cravings in one go?

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We went to Ajuker Chicken in Coquitlam. They are claimed to have the best Korean fried chicken in town. And asking Koreans where if I should go somewhere else or not was the best decision of the night.

We ordered:
– 치즈 떡볶이/Cheese tteokbokki
– 후라이드 치킨/Fried chicken
– 계란탕/Steam egg soup

My mom and her friend were super satisfied with the chicken AND the cheese spicy rice cake. I would have to agree with them – they were so gooood. I would let them use “the best Korean fried chicken in Vancouver”.

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Damaged was done, the ajummas were still curious, and we ordered one more portion of 떡볶이, this time without the cheese. T’was good, but the cheese one was better and richer in taste. We also got some fish cake soup as service *gotta love that service culture*

I would go again *well I went here several times before*, but, it’s not convenient to transit there (dear ever green line skytrain, please be operating soon).

So there you go. If you need some Korean fried chicken and cheese rice cake fix (their spicy sauce *양념 치킨* fried chicken is good too), you know where to go.

Casual/comfy dining – humble decor – friendly service – super busy on weekends *if I remember it correctly*

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Ajuker Chicken
508 Clarke Rd, Coquitlam, BC V3J 7V6
(604) 936-5527
Open 7 days/week: 2 pm – 2 am

Tealips instead of Black Bean Noodles

It’s the end of ‘Black Day’ where K-culture let single ladies and gents mourn their “single-ness” by binge eating on Korean black bean noodles: 짜장면/jjajangmyeon today.  While I have forgotten about it completely, I made an excuse to post this and create my own black day celebration. Today I “celebrate” it by going to the most-Korean-like cafe in Burnaby. It’s called Tealips. The hidden gem is located right behind Highgate mall in Edmonds. I first came to this place last Fall and I fell in love to the Korean-ness of this place.

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Tealips

It sells a variety of food and drink items, from lunch sandwiches to Caramel Macchiato.

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Drink Menu
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Waffles – Bingsoo – Sandwiches

The many times I went there, I have always sticked to the waffles and drinks. Tonight, I got Ice Caramel Macchiato, which I think tastes the same with the one I had in Seoul. The first time I had it that familiar tingled on my taste buds sold me right away. Yes! It’s Korean style!!! Super yum!

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Caramel Macchiato

I also had their mixed berries waffle with liege waffles. Here, you can choose one of the 2 types of  Belgian waffles they have. Before tonight’s visit I always had the brussels, but because I felt a bit adventurous, I went for the liege which I regretted a little bit. It wasn’t because it tasted horrible. But the liege type isn’t my cup of tea. The texture is soft and chewy (which I appreciate better than the other type), however, it’s too sweet to my taste and it felt like there were grains of sugar in the waffle dough (which I would prefer not to have).

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Mixed Berries Liege Waffle

My friend had the Green tea bingsoo/shaved ice. I wouldn’t say it’s the best because they did not put bean powder (LOVE this in my bingsoo) and put a lot of bananas, but I gotta say it’s Korean style.

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Green Tea Bingsoo

Then, I had to teach my friend how to eat bingsoo properly: mix and crush everything including the ice cream (which partially rejected for the ice cream part). Good time!

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How to eat you bingsoo!

One more striking Korean-ness is this:

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Buzzer

I won’t argue which country invented/had it first, but to me this is so Korean (and it was printed on the buzzer that it was made in Korean too). It is not the only place in Greater Vancouver that sells Korean style waffles and shaved ice. The drink options are also simpler than other bubble tea places. But there are hints, style, items, and tastes of Korean-ness that never fail to bring me back to this place to hang out/dessert time/random visit time to time again whenever I miss going out where I could imagine myself being in Seoul instead of Vancouver (plus if it’s raining and filled with Korean chatters)

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Sweet Black Day!

Fish-Shaped Pastries

Have you ever tried this pastry snack shaped like a (crucian/carp) fish which filled with red bean paste? I first saw this snack when I read Japanese manga back then when I was still in elementary school. Fast forward a few years, I found this food item in the Korean culture. Well, I don’t want, or rather, I don’t know whether this snack is originated from Japan or Korea; nor do I want to raise the debate. I just want to raise this yummy thing to your attention ㅋㅋㅋㅋ…

Bungeo-bbang
Fish shaped pastries

붕어빵 is literally translated as carp (fish)-bread. It is a pancake like snack which is usually sold at an open air vendor on the street, usually during winter. It is traditionally filled with red bean paste. However, there are more varieties these days: You can have the one filled with custard sauce with different flavours or even the one with some veggies in it.

Some other alternatives and variations of bungeo bbang are as followed:

(credit: wikipedia and The Voice of Korean Entertainment)
  • Gukhwa bbang/국화빵:  chrysanthemum cake – it is essentially identical to bungeoppang, only it is a flower-shaped pastry.
  • Gyeran bbang/계란빵: lit. “chicken egg cake – it  is filled with egg and it has a shape of rounded rectangle.
  • Hoddeok/ 호떡: Korean sweet crispy pancake – it is stuffed with brown sugar, peanuts and cinnamon. Hoddeok derived from the Chinese style savory pancake, modified to adjust the Korean taste

If you’re in the Greater Vancouver area, you can find a food vendor that sells bungeo-bbang and hoddeok. *yes, you’re very welcome*

The hoddeok and bungeo-bbang vendor
The hoddeok and bungeo-bbang vendor

The food vendor is located in the Lougheed area, on the lower level of the North Road Mall Center, out side the Korean Plaza and the Hannam Supermarket. They are open Monday to Saturday 11 am- 6pm. If you will ever have a craving for this snack on Summer time, they usually open a stall at the Richmond Night Market.

menu and business hours

They sell 2 kinds of the Korean pancake: sweet rice pancake and the vegetable pancake; and 3 kinds of bunge0-bbang filling: red bean, vegetables and custard.

Hmm what else do I want to inform you with? Oh.. I’m not in anyway endorsed by them. I just want to share good food. umm yumm. All you in Vancouver, better try this yummy snack as the weather is still perfect! Warm and sweet pancake on a cold day?! What can be better?!! kkkkk.

heoddeok in the making
F.L.T.F

Okay.. I have to run and catch my lecture now. But I promise to post some pictures later on tonight.

Until then,

xoxo

Food Coma Fail

I was on my way to VPL when a truck that looked like this:

with menu looking like this:

caught my very attention. Of course it did! It’s the famous Coma Food Truck that has three flags imprinted on the vehicle which represents three totally different culinary culture: Korean -Mexican – American. Of course it made me wanting to try.. BUT later I found out that I left my wallet at my friend’s apartment. *le sigh*

I could see though, that it has interesting list of food on its menu. They have the Korean food like bibimbap and seaweed rolls and also the fusion food like Kimchi quesadilla and Korean BBQ Burritos. I want to try the last two! hmmm.. I wonder how would cheese and Korean BBQ or cheese and Kimchi taste like!! I will definitely write my opinion/review of it in the near future! At least my  food coma attempt has failed so I can focus on writing my paper *NOT* hahah..

Well until I got the chance to find it again, and I will make sure I have my wallet this time, I will leave you with the website where you can: like them on facebook, follow them on twitter, look at their complete list of menu AND find their location!

So here’s the link to Coma Food Truck Website: http://www.comafoodtruck.com

Until Then

XOXO

get your kimchi

I went downtown today.. with all my winter gears *gloves, thick scarf, earmuffs, my warmest bots, etc* to buy all th ingredients for yukgaejang. While the dried gosari/fern-bracken is soaked overnight, here’s review of what I promised you yesterday: Where to get some good side dishes/kimchi in Vancouver.

It’s called the Windsor Market, located almost the very last block of Robson *almost the end of Robson to Denmann st*. It’s easily spotted as it’s the last ‘small shop’ before the huge Safeway building and it has RED *yay* canopy.

more specifically, here’s the exact address:

1710 Robson Street (Robson @ Bidwell)
Vancouver, BC V6G 1E2

ph # (604) 685-1532

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This stores are just like any other mini market. But you can specifically find some Korean and Japanese cooking ingredients, well mostly Korean. There you could find from sesame oil, corn syrup, frozen dumplings, to various Asian rice/grains, noodles and snacks. They even have some Korean tinned tuna and all that stuffs. If you live in downtown, this can be one of your ‘small groceries’ destination. However, this market don’t sell fresh vegetables/fruits… they have some nice flowers though =). If you have finished browsing the aisles, you will find at back 2-3 fridges. One of them is the KIMCHI/SIDE DISHES. As you can see from the pictures below, They have quite a number of kimchi and side dishes variations. You just need to grab what you want =).  I realized that Hmart in downton now has more varieties of kimchi. But I haven’t heard my kimchi lover friends said that this one is no longer the best one.

 

Alrighty!! now that you know where to buy some yummy kimchi, go ahead and try some. Stuff some in your fridge! It’s winter and you might want to make sure you have some healthy food in your fridge! And next time, I promise you I will write more about kimchi *the history, maybe the varieties, and OF COURSE the tradition*

Until then… =D