This morning, my daughter and I returned to HMart, the Korean grocery store. We arrived at 9:45 and stayed about an hour. There’s so much to see in this store, and we had plenty of purchases to make.
They have large bags of sprouts! I don’t see that in the traditional markets, and so I bought one bag. I do make sprouts at home also. However, it’s been a while since I’ve done that. Purchasing the little containers at the regular grocery stores makes me think how much cheaper it is to make them at home; however, I’m not thinking about that at all with this oversized bag.
They also had large tubs of tofu—another first for myself. We have a few tubs of the small tofu at home, so there was no need to purchase any of that today. However, when it’s needed, we’ll buy it from HMart.
Since my daughter wanted squid, we went to the back, where they have their fresh and frozen seafood. They had live sea cucumbers and octopus here. I didn’t notice either last time, although my daughter noticed the octopus. I didn’t see them; I was experiencing sensory overload. The live octopi are kept in large aquariums. I must say I felt sorry for them, too bad I don’t have a large body of saltwater on our land. I’d have been tempted to purchase a few and set them free. We bought fresh squid at $8.99 apiece. I purchased two. The fresh octopus shown in the above picture alongside the sea cucumbers was (If I remember correctly) $5.99 each.
Once we were finished with the seafood, I stocked up on condiments; hot chili paste, bean paste, sour coconut paste, shrimp paste, linseed oil, fish sauce, more buckwheat noodles, and Chinese noodles. My daughter also selected milk tea and her much-loved bubble tea.
They had noodle baskets at HMart, and I bought one of those. I had it on my wish list at Amazon; however, this basket was much cheaper at the store. Since I purchased many basic Asian supplies, I spent a lot more than I usually would. In total, I spent a little over $156. Last week, I spent a little over $70 at the same store. My weekly grocery bill averages $55. I have no regrets about either purchase, and I’m looking forward to returning to the market within a few weeks. Of course, next time, my purchases won’t be as high. I’ll just be returning for their vast selection of vegetables and whatever seafood my lovely daughter wants to try. Their prices are low, and the quality of their vegetables and fruit are amazing so that I won’t be spending much money.
After we put everything away, we prepared this dish! I used one of the fresh squids for my daughter’s portion, and there were plenty of vegetables sauteed and added to the dish to make me happy. We even had baby bok choy as a side dish. My daughter loved the flavors and is looking forward to making more Asian dishes.
Tomorrow, we’ll be choosing something from China: The Cookbook to prepare together. I found it at Barnes & Noble much cheaper than it was on Amazon. I’d wanted to get it at our local Barnes & Noble. However, it’s not available. We’ll be taking a road trip to another town, about 50 minutes away, to pick up another copy. On our way back, we’ll look at the cherry blossom trees.