Korean Restaurants

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Does anyone know whether peanuts are commonly used in Korean food? We avoid Chinese and Thai restaurants due to peanuts but we don't know about Korean cuisine.

On Oct 28, 2005

As far as I recall, Korean cuisine doesn't use a lot of nuts... peanut or tree nuts. That said, always check with the restaurant.

On Oct 28, 2005

hiya,

My own research into Korean a while back determined that they frequently use peanut oil, and, you have to be careful with the sesame oil they use (cross-contamination with peanuts).

As already stated, check the individual restaurant, but do it during the afternoon and go in person so you can talk to the manager and head chef face to face to really explain the allergy.

I've found that Benihana's and some teppanyaki places (Japanese) are *usually* safe.

Adrienne

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 28, 2005

I wouldn't consider Benihana's to be real Japanese. LOL!

On Oct 28, 2005

solarflare...I wasn't implying it was Japanese, just teppan places. Benihana's is...hmmm...ummm...japanese wanna-be? sort-of...

Adrienne :-)

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 28, 2005

Quote:

Originally posted by ajgauthier: [b]My own research into Korean a while back determined that they frequently use peanut oil[/b]

Really? I have never found a Korean restaurant that does use peanut oil. I eat at several in Toronto and none of them use it (ie: just ate at Seoul House last month).

Maybe it is due to the fact that these are authentic Korean restaurants here in Toronto.. not sure why, but so far both Korean and Japanese have been safe for me and I have never found peanut oil in either type [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

- Canada specific -

On Oct 29, 2005

Slightly OT, but sesame is just as much of an issue in Japanese food as it is in Korean food.

On Oct 29, 2005

Erik - there was one Korean place in Worcester, MA that used peanut oil in wok-type dishes, and also another I inquired about in Charlotteville, VA. There is a Japanese place here in Tucson that "can't guarantee it isn't peanut oil b/c sometimes they will use it" (Bonsai).

and yes solarflare, I agree that sesame oil is a problem in general. Last year some time I called on House of Tsang's roasted sesame oil and they told me if I was peanut allergic not to use it. To which I replied, "then put a shared equipment warning on your bottle!" (argh)

Adrienne

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 29, 2005

Hi Adrienne,

I think the use of peanut oil is much more prevelant in the USA than it is here in Canada. It is very rare for me to find a restaurant that uses it, as I have eaten at many Japanese and Korean places and never found it used. I think peanut oil is more expensive here. It is probably cheaper in the USA due to all the peanut farms in Georgia, etc (it's a bit cold here to grow peanuts with the snow we have much of the year. hehe)

I always ask to be safe everywhere I eat [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

On Oct 29, 2005

Sesame seeds are used more often than sesame oil in Japanese food. Particularly in sushi and salads.

On Oct 29, 2005

I'd agree with your statement Erik, I think peanut oil is more used in the US in general. Matter of fact, when I was in kindergarten through 2nd grade, they used peanut oil in schools b/c it was a Carter administration "surplus cheap foodstuff".

Yes, I'd find it hard to live in Georgia due to the whole peanut farming thing...peanuts everywhere! seriously, I have a friend who moved there and she says peanuts are everywhere. Also, I heard parts of Texas are bad too.

I digress...

I will finish with a small vent about PA. The one thing I really hate about it is eating out and trying all kinds of cuisine. Mongolian BBQ? Chinese? Indian? Thai? Some things I'll never be able to try in a restaurant. It'd be nice, really, to just go into an interesting restaurant and order anything I wanted off the menu without giving it a second thought! Ah, the freedom!!!

(ok, done with rant)

Adrienne :-)

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 30, 2005

Thanks for the discussion. We went to the Korean barbeque restaurant last night. It was great! I did not see any peanuts or tree nuts in anything. There was major shrimp cross-contamination as shrimp, chicken and beef were cooked on the same grill. We didn't ask about peanut oil because PA DD was not going to eat the food anyway. She was happy with her usual spaghetti and meatball brought from home.

DD did say that the smoke from the barbeque hurt her chest, but it was really well-ventilated and she didn't inhale any smoke. I think she just didn't like the smell.

On Oct 30, 2005

I've also eaten at several Korean bbq restaurants many times..it's fun [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] none have used peanut products or peanut oil (here in Toronto)

On Oct 30, 2005

I'm officially jealous!

;-) Adrienne

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 30, 2005

Quote:

Originally posted by ajgauthier: [b]I'm officially jealous!

;-) Adrienne

[/b]

Perhaps there are safe Korean BBQ restaurants in your area? We have a large Korean community in Toronto so we have many restaurants, but not sure if your area has many choices. Let us know if you find any... Good luck [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

p.s. Japanese restaurants are usually free of peanuts too (or they are in Toronto.. I've eaten at about 15 different Japanese restaurants over the years here in Toronto.. maybe more)

On Oct 30, 2005

Quote:

Originally posted by erik: [b] p.s. Japanese restaurants are usually free of peanuts too (or they are in Toronto.. I've eaten at about 15 different Japanese restaurants over the years here in Toronto.. maybe more)[/b]

I concur... my mother's family is Japanese, and DH's family is Japanese, and I've eaten at many Japanese restaurants in my lifetime. Peanuts aren't that common in traditional Japanese cuisine. Almond and chestnut at common dessert flavorings, but are rarely used in savory cuisine. I can think of one dish that is served specifically for Osechi Ryori (New Years food) that contains chestnut.

On Oct 30, 2005

oh I agree, Japanese and Korean cuisine does not regularly use nuts or peanuts. Where I have lived though, the issue is the possible use of peanut oil. There was a Japanese (teppan) place in Worcester, MA I could eat at, and I never found one in Charlottesville. While traveling for business I discovered Benihana's and was delighted I could order anything off the menu. I haven't really looked yet in Tucson. I inquired at a new place (Bonsai) and they used a blend of oils and such, of which sometimes is peanut oil. So, they are out. There are numerous sushi/teppan places in Tucson I have yet to inquire about....I'm sure I could find one if I called around.

Adrienne

P.S. I'm still jealous! *smile*

------------------ 30-year old survivor of sever peanut/tree nut allergy

On Oct 31, 2005

I live near a lot of great Korean restaurants in Chicago and I definitely feel safer eating there than at, say, Thai, Vietnamese or even Chinese restaurants. I do want to mention, though, that I have more than once seen a dish (an appetizer type thing, brought out with the kim chi and other delicious little plates before the entree), that is comprised of spinach or some other green vegetable in a brown peanut sauce. It looked "peanutty" enough the first time that I knew to ask my partner to taste it first. Afterwards, I did a little online research about Korean cuisine and found some references to peanut sauce. I have never run into any problems with "stealth" peanuts in Korean food, however, and they certainly don't sprinkle peanuts everywhere as in Thai food.

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