How to Make 'Parasite's' Ram-don at Home: Recipe

Courtesy of Yoonjin Hwang

A pivotal scene in the Oscar-nominated film involves cooking this dish, also known as jjapaguri. The Hollywood Reporter enlisted some expert help for a recipe to make at home.

In Bong Joon Ho's genre-bending thriller Parasite, Kim Chung-sook (Chang Hyae-jin) is tasked with making ram-don with steak for the soon-to-arrive Park family. In the film, they used instant black bean noodles and spicy seafood-flavored noodles made by two of the most famous South Korean noodle brands. However, THR asked Yoonjin Hwang, the chef behind Korean café Spoon by H on Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles, to create an accessible recipe for those who might be unfamiliar with the dish. Her restaurant has earned attention for her innovative recipes and, in 2018, was christened by Momofuku empire-builder David Chang as his restaurant of the year. "When you make it and try it once, you will crave it quite often because it's so fast and easy to make," says Hwang of the dish. "But it can be still quite healthy if you add some protein to it."

An Elevated Take On Parasite's Ram-don

Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon red chili paste or gochujang

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon black bean paste

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon plum sauce

1 teaspoon fish sauce

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

Directions

1. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a skillet.

2. Add a good amount of chopped scallions and finely chopped garlic, and red chili paste; cook over moderately high heat until scallions are softened.

3. Add any vegetables you like (such as thinly sliced zucchini, onion, carrot, broccoli and mushroom). Stir-fry 3 to 5 minutes, until softened and nicely cooked.

4. Add any cooked protein you like (short ribs are shown here), soy sauce, black bean paste, brown sugar, plum sauce, and fish sauce. Toss together.

5. Cook udon noodles in a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain; add noodles to skillet.

6. Stir-fry over high heat until everything is heated through, 2 to 3 minutes.

7. Add freshly ground pepper, fried garlic chips (optional) and additional chopped scallions; sprinkle with sesame seeds and toasted sesame oil. Garnish with any fresh herbs you like.

Precooked udon noodles, vacuum-packed in plastic, are available at many Asian markets and some supermarkets. Frozen udon noodles can also be used.

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OSCAR VIEWING PARTY INSPIRATIONS

Some movie-themed snack ideas for tastes of all kinds

Peach Pie

Contains a key ingredient deployed by “Jessica” in Parasite.

Doughnuts

Consumed by the hero of Richard Jewell.

Pizza and Fanta

A favorite of Pope Benedict in The Two Popes.

Vodka-Infused Watermelon

Despised by Jimmy Hoffa in The Irishman.

Mac and Cheese

Prepared by Cliff Booth in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

 

This story first appeared in a January stand-alone issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.