Let’s dive into each topic in more detail below:
Korean cuisine is known for its bold and spicy flavours, as well as its use of fermented ingredients and traditional cooking techniques. Korean cuisine also emphasizes the importance of balance in taste and nutrition, with a focus on incorporating a variety of ingredients and flavours in each meal.
Here are some of the top must-try dishes in South Korea:
- Korean BBQ
Korean BBQ is a popular dining experience, where diners grill their own meats on a grill at the table. The meats are typically marinated in a savoury and sweet sauce, and served with lettuce leaves, garlic, and a variety of side dishes.
Kimchi is a staple in Korean cuisine and is a spicy fermented side dish made with cabbage, radish, or other vegetables. It is often served as a side dish with every meal and is believed to have numerous health benefits.
Bibimbap is a traditional Korean dish made with rice, vegetables, meat, and gochujang (red pepper paste). It is served in a bowl with the ingredients arranged in sections and is mixed together before eating.
- Jjigae (Stews)
Jjigae is a Korean stew made with a variety of ingredients, including tofu, vegetables, meat, and seafood. There are many different types of jjigae, including kimchi jjigae, doenjang jjigae, and spicy seafood jjigae.
- Banchan (Side Dishes)
Banchan are small side dishes that are served with every Korean meal. They can include a variety of pickled vegetables, marinated meats, and seasoned tofu.
- Korean Fried Chicken
Korean fried chicken is a popular street food in South Korea and is known for its crispy exterior and juicy interior. It is often served with a variety of dipping sauces, including soy garlic and spicy gochujang.
- Tteokbokki (Spicy Rice Cakes)
Tteokbokki is a popular street food in South Korea and is made with chewy rice cakes in a spicy sauce. It is often served with fish cakes and boiled eggs.
- Hoedeopbap (Raw Fish Salad)
Hoedeopbap is a raw fish salad made with various types of fish, vegetables, and rice. It is often served with a spicy sauce and is a popular dish during the summer months.
- Haejangguk (Hangover Soup)
Haejangguk is a hearty soup made with beef broth, vegetables, and rice cakes. It is often eaten as a hangover cure and is believed to help restore the body’s energy and balance.
Korean desserts include a variety of sweet treats, including rice cakes such as tteok, which can be filled with sweet bean paste or coated in sesame seeds. Other popular desserts include patbingsu, a shaved ice dessert topped with sweet red beans and fruit, and hotteok, a sweet pancake filled with brown sugar and nuts.
South Korea offers a rich and diverse culinary experience, with a variety of unique and flavourful dishes to try. From the sizzling meats of Korean BBQ to the spicy stews and pickled side dishes, there’s something for every taste bud. We hope this guide has inspired you to explore the world of Korean cuisine and discover your new favourite dish.