“Korean spicy is good spicy” said to me the owner of the hostel where I stayed while in Seoul. Well, yes I cannot disagree but Korean food is very fiery in my opinion. I am not exactly a whimp when it comes to hot food but when I tried rice cakes in chili sauce for the first time I quickly needed to grab my glass of water and afterwards a tissue as my eyes watered kind of embarrassing but what can you do?
Kimchi is another spicy Korean classic. It is a fermented cabbage served often as a side dish in many restaurants or as a standalone dish, for example as a kimchi soup that nearly killed me once. Many Koreans have a special fridge to keep their beloved kimchi. Thats is dedication!
Although I had kimchi on few occasions with my meals it was actually a pickled radish that became my favourite snack. Crunchy, sweet and beautifully yellow! Danmuji is delicious.
— NOT AT HER DESK (@notatherdesk) October 22, 2015
My friend Hwa Jin introduced me to Korean pancakes. We had them for lunch in her local restaurant. They are smaller and more savory than the pancakes we are familiar with in Europe and you tear them into smaller pieces using chopsticks so you can dip them in (yes!) spicy soy sauce.
Anyone visiting South Korea should also try bibimbap. It is a famous Korean dish and it literally means “mixed rice’ and to me it a bowl of veggie delights!
Kimbap or gimbap is a black sushi roll that quickly became my favourite Korean food. It is packed with crunchy veggies and if you feel like it you can order it with some extras. I tried mini kimbap in Seoul and a standard one that was cut into smaller pieces for me in Gyeongju. On both occasions it was a winner!
Korean barbecue represents a way of eating food that I love. You sit together with your friends and take your time to prepare small bits of food that cook slowly in front of you. When you travel on your own it gets tricky to find dinner companions but in Seoul I was lucky to meet great people at my hostel, who also wanted to check out what Korean BBQ is all about.