A couple of years ago, Todd, Diane and I flew to NYC to work on a small video project with the French Culinary Institute. We met up at the hotel on the first day and after a 14.63 second hello, we jumped into a cab and headed to Momofuku Saäm Bar. If you know us, food is on our minds – ALL THE TIME. We’d rather stay in a clean hotel in the crappy part of town to save money — so that we could spend it on food…..which we did.
Our hotel….err….motel was nice, tidy but sooo small. If I wanted to stretch out my arms, I’d have to open the door to so. And I’d probably even hit the elevator button in the same motion.
But enough about the hotel, back to the food.
At Momofuku Milk Bar, we saw little jars of Kimchi Butter for sale (see DL’s mention and photo of the jar), and I was so tempted to buy a gallon to bring home with me, but I don’t think TSA would appreciate a vat of butter in my carry on.
Kimchi butter is spicy, savory, a touch of sour and is awwwwwesome on steak, burgers, vegetables or eggs. Psssstttt…..great hangover breakfast: scrambled eggs cooked with kimchi butter and a side of bacon.
Here’s my version that includes chopped kimchi, a spoonful of miso (for savory) and some good butter. Other things you can add to make your own – a few shakes of fish sauce, finely minced garlic, finely grated fresh ginger and Korean chili powder to make it more spicy.
Add everything to your food processor and whiz, whirl until everything has come together nicely. Or, if you like, just chop everything by hand and mix in a bowl.
You can put this in a jar and refrigerate, but I like to make Kimchi Butter logs that I can refrigerate or freeze. When I need some, I just cut off a piece of the log and return the rest to the freezer.
Kimchi Butter Logs
I use a sushi mat to make rolling a lot easier, but you really don’t need to if you don’t have one.
Lay the sushi mat on the counter with the slats going horizontal. Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on top.
Spoon the Kimchi Butter onto the plastic wrap.
Wrap the bottom edge of the plastic wrap up and over and shape loosely into a log shape. Try to keep a 1.5″ edge of plastic wrap on both sides.
Grab the bottom of the sushi mat and roll on top of the log.
Now use two hands – right hand is pulling back on the mat to tighen the log. The other hand is holding the edge of the mat out. Notice that the edge of the mat (in my left hand) stays on top – do not let that edge tuck under the Kimchi Butter. Keep tugging and tightening until the Kimchi Butter is a nice, solid, evenly sized log. (this is also the way to make sushi rolls too)
Ta-da! Twist the ends and refrigerate or freeze.
Or you could just skip all this fancy rolling and place the Kimchi Butter in a jar or plastic tub to refrigerate.
Steak with Kimchi Butter Recipe
Use this savory kimchi butter for so many things! Mix with steamed or roasted vegetables; cook with scrambled eggs; on a burger.
You can also store kimchi butter log in the freezer and just cut off what you need. For a spicier version, you can add a 1/4 teaspoon of Korean chili powder (or cayenne powder).
Ingredients:FOR THE KIMCHI BUTTER:
1/4 cup prepared kimchi, finely chopped
1 teaspoon miso paste
1/2 cup butter, softened
FOR THE STEAKS:
4 steaks of your choice
12 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 tablespoons fresh chives, minced
1/4 cup prepared kimchi, for garnish (optional)
1. To make the Kimchi Butter – combine the kimchi, miso paste and butter (you can chop the kimchi by hand or add everything in a food processor give it a good whiz). Store Kimchi Butter in a jar or make a log (see photos above).
2. Preheat a large grill pan and grill the steaks to your liking. For 1″ steaks medium-rare, I like to grill each side for 5 minutes on high heat. Then turn the heat to low, cover steaks loosely with tin foil and let finish cooking for an additional 3 minutes.
3. Remove the steaks to a plate to let rest. Return the same pan to the stove and turn heat to medium-high. Add 2 tablespoons of Kimchi Butter to the pan. When the butter is bubbling, add in the sliced mushrooms and cook for 5-7 minutes until tender. Stir in the soy sauce and the fresh chives. Serve mushrooms on top of the steaks with a side of kimchi.