I like ordering kimchi chigae when I am not feeling well or usually when I got a hangover after a drinking session the past night. It really gives me the comfort that I need, maybe because of the spicy hot soup or whatsoever. Anyway, kimchi chigae is a popular soup made mainly with kimchi. It is prepared using sliced ripen kimchi that is usually put into a pot with tofu, onions and garlic with beef, pork or seafood and are being boiled together with water. Korean red pepper paste (gochuchang) or Korean soybean paste (doenjang) is usually use as seasoning to add taste, color and aroma. The soup is served in a stone pot that is boiling and normally kimchi chigae is eaten with a bowl of rice together with different side dishes.
KALBITANG (Rib Beef Soup)
I can’t deny that kalbitang is at the top of my favorite Korean dish. I am a beef lover, whether roasted, cooked with soup, grilled or fried.
Kalbitang is a beef rib soup that is commonly found in Korean cuisine. Traditionally, the beef ribs would be boiled for 5 hours where most of the fat is drained out and the meat becomes very tender. The addition of onions, garlic, and other ingredients will give a better taste. The seasoned beef ribs and sliced radish are again put into a stone pot along with vermicelli noodles which are then cook once more and a minced scallions, black pepper powder and salt can also be added later. Kalbitang is usually served on wedding receptions.
JAMPONG (Spicy Seafood Noodle)
Jampong is a favorite Korean dish most especially during winter season. Like any other Korean dish, jampong is also spicy, I could say extremely spicy for an ordinary one like me whom not use to eat spicy food. I need a lot of tissue beside me if I have to take jampong as my meal because I really sweat a lot. The spiciness can be mild though, just asks the server of the restaurant. What I enjoy with jampong is the seafood on it. Korean-Chinese restaurants usually are the one who specialize this dish.
Jampong is being cooked with the mixture of noodles, gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper powder), fresh seafood such as squids, shrimps, clams and fresh vegetables such as onions, red peppers, and scallions as well as other spices.
SUNDAE (Korean Sausage)
If you are a lover of exotic food and it happens that you will visit Korea then I recommend you to try sundae. Sundae is a Korean sausage made of boiled or steamed cow or pig’s intestines filled with mix stuffed such as blood, vermicelli noodles and added spices. It is a traditional Korean sausage and popular snack food and can be categorized as street food though it is also being served on restaurants. This one is little spicy and dipping with salt while eating will add a better taste to the food. There are different variations of sundae and the most popular and best in taste according to my Korean friends is the sundae made at Sundae Town in Sillim-dong, I hope I can try next time.
NAENG MYUN (Buckwheat Noodles)
We were on a business trip last summer when I first heard about naeng myun (cold noodles). I was asked if I want hot or cold noodles for lunch. I thought my boss is joking that time but he really means it. I know hot and fried noodles but I don’t know that cold noodles exist. Out of curiosity I ordered cold noodles for lunch. Everyone on the restaurant enjoyed eating the said noodles which gave me the excitement. When our orders came to our table and begin eating our noodles, I was amazed because naeng myun really taste good. It was so refreshing having this cold noodles for a hot summer.
Naeng Myun plainly means cold noodles and one of the favorite dishes during the summer season. It is made of thin noodles served in a large bowl with ice broth topped with a boiled half egg, sliced beef or pork, sliced cucumber, slices of pear, chopped scallions and sprinkled sesame seeds. Adding little vinegar will give a better taste. There are two main variations of naeng myun, mul naeng myun and bibim naeng myun.