A Fat Girl's Food Guide to Eating in Korea

Choffee Cake

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Today Fat Girl turned three years old. I can’t believe that when I first started this blog that I would still be going this strong three years later. Who knew I had such a wealth of information trapped in brain? In the past year some amazing things have happened for Fat Girl. I’ve finally got a logo after two years trying, been on the radio, been featured in lots of magazines and newspapers and even been on TV. I would never have dreamed of these things happening so I’m so excited to see what’s going to happen in the future. I want to thank all of my wonderful friends and family and people who have helped me over the past year and for putting up with me taking pictures of all their food and to all the lovely restaurateurs who have invited me to their places to try their wares.

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As is tradition when it comes to birthdays a cake had to be made, so after a long hard think I decided to go with this mammoth chocolate and coffee offering. I’ve made plenty of coffee and chocolate cakes over the years but have never fused the two and I’m rather chuffed with how it turned out. It actually looks rather splendid indeed even if I do say so myself. Now I must confess that I did cheat a tiny little bit and used Betty Crocker box mix for the sponge. Could I have used my recipe for the cake? Absolutely, but with such a task ahead of me I decided to cut off a bit of the time. It doesn’t make me a bad person, and the box mix cakes always come out perfectly. My mum doesn’t have any piping nozzles as baking had never particularly been her strong point so I used a ziplock bag to frost this cake naked style and topped the whole thing with Malteasers because why not. Everyone that has tasted this cake has sung it’s praises, so thanks Betty for your awesome cake mix, it paired perfectly with my coffee frosting.

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Ingredients
2 boxes of Devil’s Food Cake (or see my chocolate cake recipe here)
500g of butter
2 teaspoons of instant coffee
500g – 700g of icing sugar
1 bag of Malteasers
1 tablespoon of cocoa powder

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celcius and make the cake according to the directions on the back of the packet, which should involve adding eggs, water and vegetable oil. Then beat the mixture for a few minutes until it’s lovely and smooth.
  2. Line two cake tins with greaseproof paper then pour a quarter of your mixture into each tin and then bake your cakes for 15-20 minutes until done, and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove the cakes from the tin and allow to cool on a rack while you bake the next two layers.
  3. To make the frosting put your room temperature butter into a bowl and sift in about a third of your icing sugar and mix together. After the butter has combined. you can add the coffee. To do this add a very small amount of boiling water to the coffee granules until dissolved, then add this to the butter cream and mix thoroughly. Sift in more of the icing sugar and keep mixing it in until you get to sweetness you are happy with. Then put all the frosting in a ziplock back and snip off one of the corners, this will do in place of a piping bag and nozzle.
  4. To assemble place your first sponge on your cake stand then pipe a line of frosting around the edge of your cake, then fill in the middle with frosting. Place your next sponge on top and repeat two more times. For the last layer cover with a thick layer of frosting then place Malteasers all around the outside. and sprinkle a little bit of cocoa powder in the middle for decoration then pop in the fridge for at least an hour or two to help firm it up before cutting and serving.This cake pairs perfect with a champagne cocktail or two.

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Berry Lemon Pavlova

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Fat Girl has returned to the mother land, and the first thing my mother asked me to make was  a pavlova. Despite her excellent skills in the kitchen my mummy still has trouble executing this dessert as well as I do, so it’s always one of the recipes she asks me to whip up upon my return. Today’s pavlova was filled with fresh cream, lemon curd and lots of lovely raspberries and strawberries because they are all sweet and in season here. The lemon curd also adds the perfect zing, it’s the ideal dessert for summer. (more…)

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Nalari – 나라리

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If you’ve been paying attention to Seoul’s foodie scene you would have noticed that churros are yesterday news and the whole nation has been going crazy for croquettes. The Korean croquettes are more or less a savoury doughnut which is then filled and rolled in panko crumbs. The interest in these babies has skyrocketed of late, just check out this queue at Busan Station! (more…)

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Villa Guerrero

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Tacos tacos everywhere, it seems you can’t swing a dead cat without bumping into a taco stand here in Seoul. Despite last years taco trend reaching its peak, it seems that the taco stores just keep on coming to tantalize our taste buds. Earlier this year we saw the opening of Little Baja, and now Villa Guerrero has opened it’s doors in Samseong-dong. I had already planned a visit when the owner got in contact with me and invited me to have a couple of tacos and a beer on the house. (more…)

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Chungaekga Dumpling

Xiaolongbao and Chinese dumplings have been a favourite of mine since as long as I can remember, biting into those pockets of sweet meaty goodness are always considered a treat despite the low price. When travelling to China, Hong Kong and Taiwan I always make a point of seeking out the cities’ best offering, often spending hours walking around the city trying to find little hidden alleyways. It always seems to take me hours to find these places as I’m not particularly adept at using google maps for some reason.

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Homemade Pickles

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Until recently the joy of a good pickled cucumber eluded me. I just never quite understood their allure until I went to New York and had the cream of the crop pickle wise at the famed Katz Deli, and I’ve not looked back since. In England we pickle our our onions and our eggs, but cucumbers not much. While in Korea a side of pickles come with just about every food imaginable, but the complaints generally sway towards being way too sweet or way to spicy. Like a man, a good pickle can be hard to find. So since it’s cucumber season and all I thought I’d throw my hand at making some up myself and if I do say so myself I reckon I did pretty darn good for a first try. I ordered my pickling spices from iHerb, they have a decent selection so I’d advise ordering from there they also come in 1 pound bags so you may wish to share with your friends. After that it was easy as pie, I boiled my brine, cut my cucumbers, popped them in the fridge then went off to Busan. 48 hours later I returned to some darn tangy tasty pickles. I was heavy handed with my spices but I think that worked for the best, though in an ideal world my fresh dill plant would have been a bit more hearty so I wouldn’t have had to supplement it with the dry stuff.  I shall definitely be doing some experimenting with different vegetables, herbs and spices in the near future, I knew I hoarded all those jars for a reason! (more…)

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Brötchen 1552

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A good bakery is hard to find in this city. Things have certainly improved since I first arrived on these shores almost seven years ago, but there is still far too much faux cream and red bean for my liking.  Living here so long, I’ve come to appreciate Korean baked goods for what they are but I still miss the goodies we are so used to finding in the European bakeries back home. So when I was invited to Brötchen 1552 in Seocho, it was nothing short of a miracle. (more…)

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Ellay’s

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Now that June has arrived, Spring is a thing of the past and Summer is now firmly entrenched in our lives. There is definite heaviness to the air, and we have started putting on the air-con, keeping cool is now of the most utmost importance. One the most delicious ways to keep cool and get yourself a nice sugar rush at the same is by eating lots and lots of lovely ice cream. (more…)

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The Queen’s Birthday

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Last week I was invited to the most prestigious event I’m ever likely to be invited to, a birthday party for Her Majesty the Queen. The party was held in the sumptuous surroundings of the British Ambassador’s Garden. It was an evening filled with fun and frivolity and I felt incredibly privileged to be there. (more…)

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Citron Soju

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Soju is without a doubt the most popular spirit here in Korea, in fact it’s actually the most consumed spirit in the world, even beating out whisky and vodka. Personally I’ve never been a huge fan. Sure it’s cheap as chips and flavourless, but I always tend to get pretty bad hangovers from it. It’s also generally drunk by itself instead of in cocktails which are my preferred method of consuming alcohol. (more…)

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