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Expand Your Korean Horizons At H&Y

If you’ve wondered what Korean food tastes like, a visit to H&Y Marketplace in Hicksville is in order. The store features samplings of at least eight different dishes every Saturday and Sunday. On a recent visit I enjoyed leek and meat filled mini dumplings, udon noodles, seaweed salad, their special Gold Ratio Multigrain rice and bulgogi (marinated sliced ribeye). After tasting their seafood pancakes, I took home a batch of fresh batter to cook later in the week. It was good.

It’s a smart move to provide these tastes because although Long Islanders are familiar with other Asian cuisines such as Chinese and Thai, Korean food is a relative newcomer here.

“We want people to experience our 5,000 year old culture and cuisine,” says Robert Han, vice president of H&Y, the second generation in the family business. Han’s parents arrived in the U.S. in 1985, opening up a vegetable store. There are now four H&Y markets in the metropolitan area, with the store in Hicksville having opened in 2007.

H&Y stands for Han Yang, an ancient name for Seoul, which is commonly used to represent the traditional values of health and youth. “Healthy eating and well being are an important part of the Asian diet,” says Han.

Korean food, relying heavily on natural ingredients, is hearty and the flavors are bold, especially in kimchi, the spicy cabbage slaw that is served with every meal. I love their array of fiery orange/red kimchi and asked Han how to choose. Each brand is different, depending upon the fermentation process — how long, how much salt, what kind of salt. With 10 different ingredients, including napa cabbage, ginger, garlic and soy sauce, there is infinite variety. He recommended the Hansol brand for a first taste of kimchi and then explained the store’s policy: if you try it and don’t like it you can return it. “We want customers to explore their taste buds,” he says.

And if the return policy isn’t enough, Han says the staff is very willing to help customers make their choices of any products in the store. Often people will come in with cookbooks, asking for help to get the right ingredients for the recipes they want to try out. Han says they’re planning to run cooking classes in the spring.

Everything in the produce department looked fresh and enticing. I was impressed with the mushroom choices — that included king oysters, oyster mushrooms and enoki mushrooms in addition to the usual button and Portobello — and the fresh lime leaves, ginseng and lotus root. In the refrigerator section, the containers of the vividly colored fish roe — green, gold, red, black and orange — made me want to start making sushi. As would be expected in a cuisine that savors tabletop barbecuing there are lots of meats, sliced and prepared and ready for BBQ and some that are marinated and ready for grilling. The fish department is outstanding with lots of choices and live fish that, on a recent visit, included fluke, eel, black fish and lobster.    

About half the products in the store are Asian, says Han, and sometimes the variety of products can be daunting. There are at least 20 different kinds of soy sauces and within those variations are multiple manufacturers with their own distinctive tastes; 30 feet of store space is dedicated to soy sauces alone. Han urged, “Try something new.” I purchased a bottle of a ponzu sauce with citrus, keeping in mind H&Y’s we’ll-take-it-back-if-you-don’t-like-it policy. It was delicious and not as salty as some and is now at home on my condiment shelf.

H&Y Marketplace is located at 478 Plainview Road in Hicksville. For more information call 516-935-4041 or visit www.hy1004.com

News

Alan Yu, an external auditor from the firm, Cullen & Danowski LLP gave the findings of the annual district external audit at Oct. 22’s Hicksville Board of Education meeting. Discussed at the meeting were the financial statements of the 2013-14 school year which officially ended June 30.

According to Yu, the Hicksville School district has a fund balance of $34 million. Roughly 26 to 27 percent of the general fund balance comprises the total budget.

Levittown Hall in Hicksville comes alive every Thursday night with music, dance, fun and laughter as students are swept away into the world of Latin dance.

Under the instruction of professional teacher Mark James, dance hopefuls learn a trio of Latin dance, including salsa, meringue and what James describes as the biggest craze in Latin dancing today, bachata.


Sports

The Hicksville girls volleyball team improved to 7-1 by knocking off Oceanside in three consecutive sets by scores of 25-13, 25-19 and 25-14.

Emily Markakis played terrificly, using a powerful serve to record three aces, seven kills and added nine digs. Nikki Chase added six kills and eight digs. Additionally, Raeann Dong was versatile—recording three aces, seven kills and nine digs.

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School


Calendar

Safe Trick or Treat

October 31

Election Day

November 4

Senior Luncheon

November 6



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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