South Korean Food – 2018 Gangwondo Provincial Specialties

MenStyleFashion was invited by Korea Tourism Organisation (KTO London) to fly to Pyeongchang, South Korea. The purpose of this journey was to promote the ‘Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games’ and to get an insight into South Korean culture. This pre-visit to the Gangwondo Province which includes PyeongChang, Gangneung and Jeongseon was a trip I was looking forward to and this was my first visit to South Korea.

During the six days of this fabulous cultural trip, I was given many different dishes to eat, taste and experience. I am very familiar with Asian cuisines but it is the first time to South Korea so I was incredibly intrigued to see what food they had to offer. Korea leads the way in terms of a healthy diet with plenty of vegetables, both pickled and fermented, a major part of a diverse cuisine. The food is always, fresh, looks great and is a very different eating experience. South Korea is a country that knows how to grill a piece of meat. Coming from an Australian background I have to say I was very impressed when it came to Korean barbecue.

Local beer often drank in South Korea

Pork

Yummy pancakes with mixed vegetables inside

Hwanggi Baeksuk

I was served a whole chicken soup boiled with astragalus thought to be among the best medicinal herbs for vitality. The dish is supposed to enhance the body’s control over sweating and therefore considered an excellent food for maintaining stamina in summer. I would certainly opt for this during the Winter Olympics 2018.

Steamed whole chicken with local potatoes from Herbnara Farm Pyeongchang

Core Ingredients

South Korea has a very unique food culture with incredible health giving properties and you will notice some influences from both China and Japan. Therefore throughout my visit I could identify how the fusions were intertwined. For me this is why in South Korea the food options are very unique. The portions served are very small, always fresh and don’t have a very strong aroma when first served. Many dishes are always served in a hot stone bowl adding to the overall look and dining experience. They can be either hot dishes or cold.

The core ingredients generally consist of beef, chicken, pig, soy bean, soft tofu, mint, eggs, chili powder, fermented cabbage, pork slices and plenty of garlic. Also ox cheek, pork belly, grilled aubergine, rice, bean-shoots, mushrooms, potatoes, carrots and dough which is used for dumplings. One important factor I noticed whilst eating in South Korea was I never came away bloated. I always felt content and full. The cuisines are one of the healthiest food dishes I have had in Asia. For me the dishes are not complicated and I would encourage anyone to just be open and explore.

Gondeure Beoseot Bulgogi

The dish below is called gondeure beoseot bulgogi, marinated Korean beef with mushrooms and thistle leaves.

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