104 Broadway Farms, New York, NY

Kimchi dumplings to-go

The Korean family owned corner deli/grocery store has been a staple in New York City for over 40 years.  The phenomena of Korean owned grocery stores started in the ’70s and spread across NYC providing a quintessential ethnic employment niche for new immigrants, and often these stores were the only source of fresh produce and food in low-income neighborhoods. Back in the late 90’s the corner Korean deli-market across from my apartment in Hell’s Kitchen was a reliable source for breakfast sandwiches with egg, cheese and ham , fresh fruit and a limited selection of greens, dairy products, a cold and hot salad bar for lunch, and fresh cut, but short lived, roses and as a bonus they would deliver beer to my apartment.

Unfortunately the business has been in slow decline since the early 2000’s (there is a 2011 NY Times article here); my old deli-market is now a bank.  A Queens College sociologist estimates that in 1995 there were ~2,500 Korean groceries in NYC, a number that had fallen to about 2,000 by 2005.  Other evidence of the shifting business is that in 2000 the Korean-American Grocers Association of New York had over 600 members, and by the time of the 2011 NY Times article there were only about 300 active members.

Pan fried Kimchi dumplings

104 Broadway Farms has expanded from the usual Korean deli offerings and is selling house cooked Korean food to-go. From the deli counter they sell roasted sweet potatoes, Bibimbap, and beef bulgogi, and on the cooler shelves in the back they have tubs of kimchi, mung bean pancakes and other jun, and cooked dumplings stuffed with pork, shrimp, chicken or kimchi.  I grabbed a tray of 10 kimchi dumplings and pan- fried them up at home.  The dumplings were stuffed with minced Napa cabbage kimchi and textured tofu that gave them a somewhat meaty mouth feel.  The kimchi was really good and instead of just being spicy, it had a complex, fermented umami flavor.  The mung bean pancakes were also really great.

It is almost self-explanatory, but 104 Broadway Farms is on Broadway at 104th street.

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