Sookmyung Summer School | Korean Food
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11 11월 Korean Food

Korean Food


Korea was once primarily an agricultural nation, cultivating rice as their staple food since ancient times. These days Korean cuisine is characterized by a wide variety of meat and fish dishes along with wild greens and vegetables. Various fermented and preserved food, such as kimchi (fermented spicy cabbage), jeotgal (matured seafood with salt) and doenjang (fermented soy bean paste) are notable for their specific flavor and high nutritional value. Kimch’i is basically a salted, pickled vegetable dish, often presented as a basic side dish in any Korean meal. The fermentation of different vegetables, complemented by salted fish and other seasonings, give it a unique flavor. The hot and spicy taste of kimch’i stimulates one’s appetite. It is also a nutritious dish, providing vitamins, lactic acid, and minerals. Kimch’i can also be preserved for a long time.



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Korean Table Manners

Traditionally, Korean food is not served in courses. Instead, it is all placed on the table at the same time. Food is eaten according to personal preference and not in a set order. The main dish is almost always accompanied by pap (rice), kuk (soup), kimch’i, and several side dishes. Koreans use the spoon for rice and soup, and the chopsticks for side dishes. Do not leave chopsticks inserted directly into the rice, as this is a ceremonial act performed in memorial services for the dead. Always wait for the oldest person present to begin eating and do not leave the table until the oldest person has finished.

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