Over the past few weeks I have been filming with Arirang TV to make a documentary called Englishman in Seoul. The programme was commissioned to coincide with the launch of Arirang TV in the UK. It is now available on Sky TV channel 690, and of course online and on youtube, so there is no reason at all for you not to watch it. The documentary shows the insatiably interesting lives of three British men and women and living in Seoul, South Korea. The show is centred around Tom Chambers from Bulldogs, Sean Blakeley from the BCCK, and yours truly.
Although I was rather self conscious about being on camera, I thought that being part of the documentary would enable me to show my friends and family back in England exactly what my life is like. I also wanted them to know exactly what being a food blogger entails, as I know that some of them aren’t really convinced that it is a real job.
The story begins with me arriving back in Seoul, from my recent trip home. I then make one of my favourite Korean foods, japchae (잡채). As my blog is focused on foreign foods a lot of people think that I never eat Korean food, but that really isn’t the case, and this is one of my favourite dishes to make at home. Cooking on camera wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be either. You might notice that I had to use bokchoi in place of the spinach in my japchae, as we were filming during the heat wave and there was absolutely none available. After having a bit of a panic in the supermarket, I put my thinking cap on and figured I could just use bok choi instead. I honestly don’t think it made much of a difference in terms of taste and the green leaves certainly helped the visual appeal.
As well as cooking up a storm, I also got to visit one of my favourite restaurants, The Beastro, in Hongdae. I have been a fan of this restaurant since it first opened and it was great to be able to include it as part of my story. The food and drinks are not only spectacularly tasty but well priced, the restaurant also boasts incredible service and it is the warm and welcoming atmosphere that brings me back again and again. We drooled over of their 24 Hanger Steaks with Truffle Fries (20,000) along with a a couple of their cocktails.We ordered a Bloody Mary (12,000) since it was brunch, which they very kindly served in one of their inflatable flamingos at my request! We also got the Ginger Darling (13,000), which was a refreshing and gingery sour summer treat, and the perfect way to revive me after a bracing walk up to Namsan Tower.
One of the other restaurants we visited was the Korean BBQ joint called HBC Gogit Jib, though we actually were actually at the Itaewon branch. This was another chance for me to show everyone at home one of my favourite Korean foods. The BBQ sums up everything I love about Korean food. You get taste a variety of different dishes while cooking at the table and sharing the food. To me it is the quintessential Korean food experience, it also a an absolute steal at 16,000 won per person for all you can eat meat, and an extra 5,000 for all you can drink beer. I’ve yet to find a better deal in my neighbourhood, in fact, I went again last night!
I also managed to sneak in a few glasses (or vats) of Pimm’s (12,500) at Tom’s restaurant, Bulldogs. This is my home away from home in Seoul, not only do they have my favourite British cocktail, Pimm’s, they also have some amazing British food, like scotch eggs and proper English style sausages. Of all the restaurants that I frequent this is the one where I feel most at home, probably because they never judge me when I get completely pissed. It is also across the street from my favourite Norae Bang joint, which always seems like a good idea once I’ve had a few. I’m not sure if I will ever live down the shame of my horrific singing being broadcast to all and sundry, but I find that drinking eases the pain.
Last but not least we attended the British Chamber of Commerce’s Summer Garden Party. As you can see the event was very swanky and when I was being filmed I felt as though I was on one of my favourite TV shows, ‘Made in Chelsea’. It was a fabulous party and I felt really lucky to attend. I have been to numerous events hosted by the BCCK over the past year and I have to say that they sure know how to put on a good shindig. It was also the perfect way to wrap up the documentary as all of us were in attendance. Hopefully you will enjoy watching the show as much as we enjoyed making it, feel free to leave any comments you have as I’d love to know what you think.