Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Uwajima, $3.19/15

Teeth still on edge after several disappointing purchases of grocery store sweets (eg
choco coffee mochi, banh xu xe), when I spotted the Uwajimaya superstore's display of Korean cakes, I almost kept walking. Something snagged my attention though--the colors? the textures? a whiff of cinnamon escaping the plastic-styrofoam trays?--and I lingered long enough to realize that these rice cakes were fresh and tender, not the thawed blobs I was expecting.

I chose a pack of small round
kyung-dan (also spelled gyung-dan), dumplings made of boiled rice flour dough (much like Japanese shiratama dango). They were filled with an impeccably smooth red bean paste and rolled in five different but equally delicious toppings: confectioner's sugar, black sesame, two kinds of bean powder, and cinnamon.

Kyung-dan are among the many Korean confections manufactured at Han Yang Oriental Food in Lakewood, Washington (yep,
that Lakewood) and sold in Asian markets around the Pacific Northwest. Judging from this cooking lesson, they're also reasonably easy to make at home.

Han Yang Oriental Food Mfg
3819 94th St.
Lake Wood, WA 98400

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