Vietnamese Roasted Chicken Recipe from Miss Kim, a Korean Restaurant



When the names of the farmers, local food purveyors and artisan bakers, coffee roasters and dairy are printed on the menu along with the names of the dishes and the ingredients, there’s a great chance that you’ll be happy with what you end up tasting. Who cares if the menu is also in Korean, with English beneath -- as it is at Miss Kim in Ann Arbor, Michigan, an epicenter for foodies.

Chef and managing partner, Ji Hye Kim, started Miss Kim because she wanted her work to mean something, bring joy and involve food. She’s what my wife and I would call an “ecopreneur,” out to make the world a better place, in her case through food. For homesteaders, this mantra of meaning and purpose should ring true, too.

“I wanted to work with food because I enjoy it so much,” says Kim. “I grew up with a mother who cooked everything from scratch.  When I learned about Zingerman's Path to Partnership, the process of becoming a Zingerman's business, I took that opportunity.” The Zingerman’s Community of Businesses are a collection of Zingerman’s businesses in Ann Arbor, each with its own food specialty.

Before becoming a Zingerman’s business, Ji Hye Kim started with a food cart operated half the year for four years, hardly keeping up with the demand for, among other items, her Gau Bau Buns, a fluffy Taiwanese-style bun filled with either slow roasted pork belly or soy sauce and butter seated mushrooms, paired with crunchy cucumbers and savory sauces. I couldn’t decide which I liked better on a recent lunch there. While lunch is casual and offers counter service, their full-service dinner menu focuses on traditional Korean dishes coming out as they’re ready. Sharing is encouraged and entrees come with “banchan,” the small side dishes. Her drinks even blew me away: Flights Delight with soju, five-spice wine, lemon and honey or Soo Jeong Gwa, a chilled, non-alcoholic cinnamon elixir.

“I study the tradition of Korean food,” explains Kim, regarding chosen her culinary path and her talent for adapting recipes for local ingredients. “I don't really try to replicate individual dishes, but I do try to understand the intentions, the stories and the thought behind it.  Rather than importing a specific breed of green onions, for example, I think about the intention.  My grandmother would not have paid extra shipping cost and import vegetables that need several days of transporting after being harvested.  She would have purchased the best local equivalent that she can find, use it in season at its peak availability and flavor. So that's what I do -- think about the flavors and the intentions of the dish and ingredients.  That approach naturally lends itself to using the best local and seasonal ingredients Michigan has to offer.”

8/5/2017 12:55:07 PM

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