March 13, 2012

Super Faminto: Naengmyeon (Chilly Korean Noodles)

by Bryan Sanders

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São Paulo has the second largest Japanese population outside of Japan (about 650,000+), but since my arrival here I’ve been pretty bummed by the lack of good Japanese restaurants. Thank God for the Koreans!

Koreans immigrated to SP with promises that Brazil was the country of the future — and Brazil still strives towards this dream. Brazil is booming and the potential is endless. The first trailblazing Koreans left their homeland in the mid-1950′s after the devastating Korean War with hopes of prosperity. But the population really grew after 1963 and continued on through the 80′s (now with over 50,000), mostly populating the areas of Bom Retiro and Aclimação. These two neighborhoods are teeming with lively places full of cold beer, hot meat (uh-huh that’s right), kimchi, and loads of noodles.

When it is hot as shit like it is today — the scorching summer heat is killer –  you want something a little more refreshing. So pair up that hot bulgogi (thinly cut beef bbq’d) or ribs, some cold beer and icy naengmyeon noodles.

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DSC05600Mul naengmyeon (mool-nang-mee-yawng). Mul = water; naengmyeon= cold noodles: cold buckweat noodles in an icy broth bath.

DSC05610Mul naengmyeon served in a tangy broth are often flavored with a mustard sauce and vinegar. Yum.

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DSC05601My bibin-naengmyeon with its spicy power and less broth. Still cool but not as icy.

DSC05602 Bibim = mix. This cold noodle mix is topped with egg, spicy chogochujang sauce, daikon, cucumber, and chilled buckweat noodles.

DSC05606 Mix the mix.

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Scissors: the most useful item ever seen used to make noodles 4-feet long edible.

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DSC05599Hot rib meat. 

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DSC05619 I ran out.

DSC05617 My obonim (father-in-law) ran out too.

DSC05618 Gone rib meat.

6 Comments

  • H
    Posted March 13, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    I love naengmyun!

  • Johnny
    Posted March 13, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    This looks too good right now.

  • Kayoko
    Posted March 13, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    Hilarious that it is summer down there as we speak and it’s “scorching”.

    Great post! Naengmyeon rocks.

    Love from a rainy and windy Bay Area.
    K

  • Anders
    Posted March 14, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Wow, would totally eat that. If it isn’t too spicy…

    Perhaps a dumb question – but I always wondered – how come most scorching hot countries serve warm, spicy food? Doesn’t chili and hot spices just annoy the body even more and the sweat pounding out?

    Wouldn’t everyone just prefer something cold all day? Like a battub of Ben & Jerry’s?

  • yoko
    Posted March 14, 2012 at 9:33 am

    I’d prefer a bath tub of Ben & Jerry’s any day. Coffee Heath Bar Crunch… fill it up please!

  • cezan
    Posted April 7, 2012 at 6:48 am

    response to anders:

    the reason why most places with high temp. tends to eat hot & spicy food seems to that; maybe we are just cutting posion with poish.. haha, a lame joke but, when u eat something spicy & hot on a scorching summer day you are effectively increasing ur natural body temp, makein u break out in sweat, gasping for air with open mouth and drastically coolin ur body… jus my own logic..

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