Momofuku Kimchi, Spider Stake-Out 2011
September 3, 2011 § 2 Comments
The motherfucking spiders nested across my front door again. They aren’t the most subtle spiders, their webs have been increasing in size and strategic placement over the months and I am aware of their designs on me. When I came home and saw the motherfucker spinning its web across the door (again!) I leapt inside and, once safely secured, contemplated the best dissuasion tactics I might use to abort any future web-traps. All I could think of was mace, which is what the other white person in town uses for bears, although I think by the time he’s close enough to actually spray the bear the bear is close enough to disembowel him. Well, I didn’t have any mace, so I settled on my next best option. CLEANING SPRAY. From the relative safety of my doorway, I sprayed the shit out of the spider before tearing back inside. I then realized that I now had a web directly across my front door and a spider waiting in it, who was probably pissed as shit. Terrified that I would forget and walk directly into it in the morning, I wrote myself a note SPIDER and taped it directly to the front door.
In the morning, I cautiously peered out but saw no sign of my furry, pissed-off friend. I HAD FINALLY SHOWN HIM MY DOMINANCE. I swept the web and a mostly dead moth aside. As I left the house, I turned to contemplate my victory and saw that NOT ONLY was angry cleaning-spray spider concealed next to where my head had been moments before, but he had brought two, significantly larger friends. The only option that occurred to me was throwing rocks at them, but I couldn’t be sure I wouldn’t be leapt on and outnumbered so I sprang from my house with some haste. I lived the following days in fear of their waiting wrath. The stand off lasted four days. By day two, the numbers of spiders had increased to SIX. I couldn’t keep leaping in and out of my house like this. It was going to give me a jumping tic or something. I finally decided to resort to chemical warfare. As of today, the spider stake-out of 2011 is over. But won’t their ghosts return to haunt me? you ask. Yes, I’m fairly sure that they will.
This is a dish that you can make when you’ve had an intense stand-off with several large spiders culminating in a chemical raid and are experiencing the subsequent fear of returning, vengeful spider spirits. David Chang’s Napa cabbage kimchi. Mincing 20 cloves of garlic and 20 slices of ginger is sure to sooth you gently. It also made everything within a 20-foot perimeter of my house smell like garlic (spiders hate garlic right?).
I have the Momofuku cookbook (two copies), but you can find the recipe online here. I used half cabbage, half daikon. And while this turned out really well, it was about 10x spicier than when I’ve had it at any of the Momofuku restaurants. I think the culprit was my kochukaru substitute (the only thing in the store I could find that looked like chili powder, clearly it was a lot spicier than expected). I also can’t get kosher salt here so I used regular rock salt and I didn’t have a problem, but I didn’t age it too long because I’m impatient and prone to snacking (usually while drunk — by the time I realize my mouth is buring it’s too late). I also made some very fine pork belly and kimchi stir fry.