Archive for September, 2011

Michaelmas: The Feast of the Archangels, September 29th
September 29, 2011

Head on over to Carrots for Michaelmas (Haley’s blog) for resources and recipes about The Feast of the Archangels: All Things Michaelmas! We hope to post about this year’s feast tomorrow or this weekend, but as we’re eagerly waiting for Baby Lucy’s arrival, no promises!


Sts. Andrew Kim Taegon, Paul Hasang, et al.
September 22, 2011

St. Andrew Kim Taegon

Back in the 17th century – 1600 years after Christ was born, and about 100 years after Luther posted the 95 theses – Christianity was only slowly creeping into Korean culture. Yet, Korea could not claim a native-born priest, someone to administer the sacrifice of the Mass, until 1845. Andrew Kim Taegon was ordained by a French priest while studying in the seminary in Macau, the Portugese colony in what is now Southern China.

St. Paul Chong Hasang

Paul Hasang was the son of another Christian martyr, who, together with his brother (Paul’s uncle and also a martyr), wrote the first Catholic Catechism in Korean. When Paul grew older, his political career offered many opportunities to strengthen the Church in Korea. He met with the bishop of Beijing several times and got him to send resources to the persecuted Church. He also wrote to Pope Gregory XVI (who is known for issuing the papal bull condemning international slave trade) to set up a diocese in Korea, which happened in 1825. He was to be ordained a priest before another of several persecutions broke out. He was caught and his writings were seized as evidence. His judge read them and stated, “You are right in what you have written, but this religion is forbidden and you must renounce your faith.” To which Hasang replied “No,” but likely more eloquently.

The Korean Martyrs

Andrew Kim Taegon was also victim of this persecution as were many other priests, non-Korean bishops, and lay. This feast was established by Bl. John Paul II as commemoration of the martyrdom required to establish Christianity in Korea. All martyrs exhibit a peculiar grace; the Church tells us that martyrs give “the supreme witness to the truth of the faith.” The supreme witness of the martyrs receives the supreme station of veneration. No miracles needed. Nothing but the power of their testimony.

This feast is pertinent to me (J) for the reason illustrated below.

My mom, my dad, my kid.

Accordingly, we cooked a wonderful spread of Korean barbecue beef (bulgogi) and sides.

Bulgogi (Beef, 2lbs tenderloin, sliced REALLY thinly)

Bulgogi beef


1/4c Soy sauce

2T sugar

1T sesame oil

1t vinegar

1/2 onion, grated

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2t ginger, grated

1t. sesame seeds

1/4t. pepper

To get the beef thin enough, place in freezer for about 20 minutes then cut with sharp knife.

Marinate beef for … a long time. It’s not really that necessary since it’s cut so thinly. But just keep it in the fridge for a long time. Just do it.

Then, cook it over a grill. We didn’t. We cooked it in a wok.

Bulgogi (chicken, breast meat, sliced thinly)


3T soy sauce

1T sugar

1t rice vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4t ginger, grated

1 green onion, diced

2t sesame oil

1T water

1t sri-racha, or Korean chili paste

pepper to taste

Marinate the same way, yo.

Pickled cucumbers (left) and Pajori (right)

Pajori (Korean scallion salad)

Pickled cucumber

Korean Bok Choy and, well, rice

Bok Choy

Doing our best to keep it real

Last words of St. Andrew Kim: “…if I have held communication with foreigners, it has been for my religion and for my God. It is for Him that I die. My immortal life is on the point of beginning. Become Christians if you wish to be happy after death, because God has eternal chastisements in store for those who have refused to know Him.”

Evening prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours for this Feast:

O God,
you have created all nations
and you are their salvation.
In the land of Korea
your call to Catholic faith
formed a people of adoption,
whose growth you nurtured
by the blood of Andrew, Paul, and their companions.
Through their martyrdom and their intercession
grant us strength
that we too may remain faithful to your commandments
even until death.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
– Amen.

Catalan Picada Chicken and Flatbread for St. Raymond Nonnatus, August 31st
September 6, 2011

Post by Daniel

St. Raymond Nonnatus is from Catalonia, Spain. His mother died during childbirth so Raymond was delivered via cesarean section (hence the epithet Nonnatus, Latin for “not born”). He became a member of the Mercedarian Order which was founded to ransom Christian prisoners from the Muslim Moors in North Africa. Raymond succeeded the order’s founder, St. Peter Nolasco, as the master-general who was responsible for traveling to Africa and buying back the captives. When St. Raymond ran out of money, he offered himself as a hostage in the place of one of the prisoners. He continued to work for the advancement of the Kingdom of God in prison and won many converts from Islam. No amount of torture or punishment could keep St. Raymond from preaching the gospel so the Moors bored holes through his lips and padlocked them shut (he had simply been sentenced to death at one point but the hope of a large ransom kept the sentence from being carried out). He was later returned to Spain and died near Barcelona. He is the patron saint of expectant mothers, midwives, newborns, and falsely accused people.

Appetizer: Catalan Flatbread and Pale Ale

Dough ingredients:

1 cup plus 3 tablespoons white flour

1 teaspoon salt

½ cup milk

2 ½ teaspoons dry yeast

Topping ingredients:

Authentic ingredients would probably include anchovies, piquillo peppers, Spanish olives, and Manchego cheese. But we already had some other stuff that we thought would be good and we didn’t want to buy anything that we didn’t have to. So we used this stuff instead:

½ a red onion sliced

3 small bell peppers sliced

1 cup baby greens

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup grated cheese (we happened to have mozzarella and pecorino romano)

Salt and pepper

1.       Heat the milk slightly so that it is warm but not TOO hot. Add the yeast. Meanwhile, stir the salt into the flour. After 5 minutes, add the milk and yeast to the flour and mix together. Knead until smooth, either by hand or using a mixer with a paddle attachment. Let it rise for half an hour.

2.       Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat the olive oil in a skillet and add the onions. After a minute or so, add the peppers, and then the greens. Set aside.

3.       Divide the dough into 8 equal parts and form into balls. On a floured surface, roll them out into long flat ovals (about 10 inches long) and place on an oiled baking sheet. Let them sit for a few minutes.

4.       Prick the flatbreads with a fork and add the veggies to top. Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes until the edges begin to turn slightly golden. Remove from the oven and add the cheese and pepper. Bake for another few minutes or until the cheese begins to melt. Remove from the oven and serve them hot with the cold pale ale.

Catalan Picada Chicken:

Picada (not to be confused with the Italian picatta) is a paste used to thicken and add depth of flavor. Somewhat similar to a molé but without the heat, picada is a distinctive aspect of Catalan cuisine. There are probably as many recipes for picada as there are abuelas in Catalonia, but this is a basic recipe to draw from.

4 whole chicken legs, split (2 pounds)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

One 14-ounce can whole tomatoes,  drained and finely chopped

1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

1/4 cup oloroso sherry

One 3-inch strip of orange zest

1/4 teaspoon thyme leaves

For the Picada:

1 slice of thick crusted bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (1/2 cup)

1/4 cup almonds

3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, chopped

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

¼ teaspoon cumin

Small pinch of ground cloves

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the chicken, skin side down, and cook over moderately high heat until browned, 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Add the onion to the skillet and cook over moderate heat until softened, 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook over moderately high heat until very thick, 5 minutes. Add the broth, sherry, orange zest and thyme and bring to a boil. Add the chicken, cover and simmer over low heat for 30 minutes, turning once.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°. Toast the bread and almonds on a baking sheet, about 8 minutes.

In a skillet, heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of oil. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until golden, 3 minutes. Transfer to a food processor with the bread and almonds, the chocolate, parsley, cinnamon, and cloves. Process to a paste.

Stir the picada into the sauce and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Note on saffron: A lot of people believe saffron to be a vital ingredient in picada. A lot of people also recognize that saffron is ridiculously expensive. We don’t really keep it around but, if you have some or feel that it would add to the authenticity of the dish, go ahead and toss some into the picada.

We kind of forgot to take pictures until we were halfway through our meal so they’re not stellar. But the food was scrumptious, promise.