Korean flavors burst at MCF

BY DI STAFF | APRIL 03, 2014 5:00 AM

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The following specialties were prepared by chef Masae Yoshino Judge from Leaf Kitchen, 301 1/2 Kirkwood, for Wednesday’s Small Plates Dinner, part of the Mission Creek Festival.

The Kochuchang Fried Chicken started me off baffled because of my lack of experience in the Korean flavors. The breading was modest, more of a flavor vehicle around the lean pieces of chicken. After devouring the first piece, it became clear what the flavor was. Hot with chili powder, I started sweating fast.

The Kimchee Hot Dog featured fermented cabbage with chili powder and garlic on top of a Nathan’s hot dog, with a sweet Hawaiian bun. The open-face serving allowed for the juices to be collected for every bite. The hot mustard added to the explosive flavor. I’ve never been so happy to eat a hot dog.

The Seared Tofu with Ponzu and Scallion Oil looked like two golden crisped cakes with a pool of juices sitting beneath. That pool of flavor is the saving grace of an otherwise notoriously bland entrée. The blast of flavor with the crisp edges provide a unique and satisfying entrée.

— by Ben Verhille

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