Use small, slender Persian cucumbers -- they are less watery and have much smaller seeds. Korean hot-pepper powder is a blend of roughly ground sweet and slightly spicy red pepper. Chile de arbol is a good substitute.
Korean cucumbers, which are available at Asian markets, look like long, thin Persian cucumbers. Pickled, they have a wonderful crunch. To fast-track the process, you can blanch and brine the cucumbers twice a day -- once in the morning and again in the evening.
These juicy dumplings are easy to make. When cooking for a crowd, Eunsook Pai sears the dumplings a couple of hours in advance and then steams them just before serving. Although she makes her dumpling wrappers from scratch, store-bought ones also do the trick.
Guests can fill lettuce cups with steak and fresh herb sprigs or place steak and herbs in lettuce leaves and roll them. If you can't find Memmi Noodle Soup Base, use a combination of fish stock, soy sauce, sugar, and vinegar.