Saturday, November 12, 2011
As I mentioned in my sigeumchi namul post, namul is the general term that refers to a seasoned vegetable side dish. An infinite number of farm-grown or wild vegetables are used to make nauml dishes in Korea. One of my favorites, which can easily be found here in America, is watercress. I love its slightly bitter and peppery flavor. When lightly cooked, watercress has that crunchy and chewy texture Korean namul is known for. Depending on where you are, you may often find this dish among many side dishes served at Korean restaurants. It is unbelievably easy to make and loaded with nutrients. So, add this to your list of Korean side dishes! Like spinach, watercress cooks down significantly, so double the recipe if you're serving more than 2 people or want to have some leftover for the next day. It is great in bibimbap as well.
1 bunch watercress (about 6 - 8 ounces)
1 scallion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds
salt to taste (about 1/4 teaspoon)
Wash the watercress thoroughly.
Boil about 10 cups of water with 2 teaspoons of salt. Blanch the watercress until wilted, 30 - 40 seconds.
Quickly remove it from the pot and shock in cold water to stop the cooking.
Drain and gently squeeze out excess water. Cut into 2 to 3-inch lengths.
Add the remaining ingredients and mix everything well, by hand. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes for the seasonings to seep into the watercress.