Food in South Korea

I am very privilege to be able to travel and explore so many different parts of the world. Traveling is important to me because it helps reset my thinking and put me and my world view into perspective. I am reminded again and again of how big our world is, and how wonderful it still is. There is wonder and adventure everywhere, and there are still people with big hearts who make the world a little kinder.

I am thankful for the privilege to travel.

I am thankful that I have destinations I’ve fallen in love with, miss dearly, and want to visit again and again.

I am thankful for the kind people I’ve met and thankful for friends who have shown me their cities and their homes.

I am thankful for a job that permits me to travel and for colleagues who support me and make my vacations possible.

I am thankful for my family who makes sure I’m safe and who shares the love of traveling as much as I do.

I am thankful for my friends who listen to my stories and are always supportive and excited for me.

I am thankful for this blog, an archive of my happy memories and adventures. I’m so happy that I’ve kept up with it.

Finally, in the spirit of it being Thanksgiving here in the United States, I am thankful for the wonderful food I’ve got to try on my travels. Here are some highlights from South Korea.

Here are some shots from Home Plus in Busan: huge Asian Pears, avocados, frozen seafood, and soju.


One of the things I miss most is street food. It’s so convenient when you’re in need of a quick snack. Street food stands bring together so many different people from all walks of life to enjoy simple and common Korean food: kimbap, spicy ddeokbokki, fishcakes, etc.


This is poop bread bought in Gamcheon Culture Village. It is a soft and sweet bread with a sweet cream.


Hotteok is a sweet pancake deep fried with a brown sugar filling. I was told that hotteok with seeds filling, shown below, is unique to Busan. I’ve tried hotteok with japchae, the Korean glass noodle stir-fry, and it is also very good. The only caution I would give is to be careful if you are eating a honey hotteok as the honey is extremely hot. It’s a very tasty treat and is one of my favorite street food snacks!


A very hearty meal of ramen and tonkatsu from the food court in Home Plus.IMG_2097

Sharing a meal of jjampong, a spicy seafood noodle dish, stir-fry jjampong, and jajangmyeon, the black bean noodle.
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This shabu shabu meal was so delicious and the spicy dipping sauce was excellent! Shabu shabu is similar to hot pot where you’ll cook the protein and vegetables in the broth, and what makes it unique is you’ll wrap everything up in a rice paper wrapper, similar to a spring roll. It’s very hands on. It’s really good and is especially great for a cold day.
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Korean BBQ with some of the most delicious kimchi I’ve ever tasted.
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My friend ordered delivery for our last meal in Busan. We had bossam, boiled pork belly, and jokbal, braised pig feet. I can confidently say that this is my new favorite Korean food. I love how simple the preparation of the meat is, but yet so flavorful. It is so hearty and so comforting, especially when eaten with soybean paste soup, which is also a new favorite.


And for dessert, we typically had bingsu, shaved ice, or ice cream. The mango bingsu was my favorite.


This is a sweet custard bread bought in Myeongdong train station in Seoul. You can smell the sweet bread baking within the proximity of its stall, and that sweet smell is irresistible.


I like hotteok a lot, so I ate a lot of them. These ones are from Insadong and you can get them filled with honey or with japchae.


A street food vendor selling heaps of japchae in Myeongdong.IMG_3976

Mini kimbap, 6 rolls for 5,000 won.
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Rose ice cream
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A street food vendor selling octopus. I had the spicy one and it was so good!
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A simple meal of udon noodles.IMG_2776

A meal at Din Tai Fung because we wanted some xiao long bao.


Yoogane chicken galbi is a marinated chicken stir fry with rice or noodles of your choice and is cooked in front of you. It is so delicious and a must eat.


Mul naeng myun, Korean cold noodle soup, is perfect for a hot day.IMG_3074

Tonkatsu donburi
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This was my first time eating Thai food in South Korea and also my first time having soft-shell crab egg curry. The restaurant seems to have Thai owners as the staff and possibly chef(s) were Thai. I think the restaurant is called Amazing Thailand and is in Hongdae. This being my first time having this dish and having nothing to compare it to, I thought it was quiet delicious.
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Xian spicy noodles, wide noodles with an assortment of vegetables and coated with chili oil.


Tacos, burrito, and fries from Muchacho Seoul in Gangnam.IMG_3786

This particular meal of bossam and jokbal was probably one of my favorite meals in South Korea. It was the first lunch of my two lunches that day. It was so simple but so filling, hearty, and comforting. I loved the bossam and I loved all the vegetables and dipping them in the ssamjang.
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This was my second lunch. I had Aori Ramen across the street from the bossam restaurant. (I stuffed myself because it was our last full day and there was still so much I wanted to eat.) The broth was so flavorful and the ramen was excellent. I didn’t like that the broth was a bit oily, but it was great overall.


Tuna kimbapIMG_4413

And even more bossam and soup. This is a very social meal to eat as it is meant to be shared with lots of people and people typically have it with drinks. There were several company parties at this particular restaurant in Jongno 3(sam)-ga’s Gul Bossam Alley.
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Dolsot bibimbap
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More mango bingsu
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This macha ice cream was delicious!
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Some beautiful figs on a flakey pastry.
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This was probably the one food item I didn’t like. The flavor and texture was just not to my liking.
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Three percent alcohol Peach beer.
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This was my most favorite snack of all convenience store snacks.
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A sweet rice drink.
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And a huge spread of kimchi.

 

That’s all for now. I hope you enjoyed this food post!

Happy Thanksgiving (if you celebrate this holiday)! But regardless of it, I think it’s important to spend time thinking about the people or things in your life that you’re thankful for.

Let me know in the comments what you’re thankful for today, or what your favorite food is!

Thank you for reading.
I’m also thankful for you.
-Thao

 

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