Cuisine of the Week: Korean
The latest food craze to hit our palates is Korean cuisine, one of the newest international food trends. Korean cuisine is rooted in tradition and got its big break thanks to the diverse foods being showcased in Korean pop culture, which is popularized around the world. We’ll explore how many of Korean cuisine traditions came to be and must-try dishes for the next time you dine!
History of Korean Cuisine
The origins of Korean cuisine dates back to the early dynasties of Korea. The way we know Korean food today can be traced back to the traditions of the food. Korean food is predominantly health-based with lots of vegetables, reflective of the landscape of Korea and the dominant historical industry of agriculture during the Three Kingdoms Era (Goguryeo, Baekje, and Silla).
As agricultural practices grew, so have the cooking techniques. Attention shifted to learning how to preserve the latest harvest, often requiring the addition of spices, herbs, and fermentation.
Entering the Joseon Period, trade began to take root in Korea, which introduced elements from other areas, such as fish from the coastal regions or crops from China and Japan. Each of these was incorporated into traditional dishes to begin to shape what will become recognized as Korean cuisine.
Popular Korean Food Dishes
Kimchi is a local favorite in Korea, being one of the earliest cultural dishes from the country. It’s a dish made from fermented vegetables. The base consists of cabbage and Korean radish. It can be flavored with a variety of spices, seasonings, and other vegetables.
Korean barbecue is a favorite food and cooking tradition for grilling meat. A variety of meats, beef, pork, or chicken, are prepared on a grill at the dining table. The meat is then served with various side dishes including lettuce, for wrapping the meat, cucumbers, and other fresh vegetables.
Ginseng is a natural root popularized for its health benefits. The most common way to enjoy it is the Ginseng Chicken Soup. It may also come in a drink form. Many people attribute the root for boosting energy. Festivals in Korea have been created to honor the Ginseng, providing a place to purchase, consume, or celebrate the plant.
Interesting facts about Korean Cuisine
- Dae Jang Geum (Jewel in the Palace) in 2003 is credited with starting the Korean wave internationally; it’s a TV series about a Royal Palace cook, effectively putting Korean cuisine at the forefront of pop culture
- The tradition of having several dishes for a meal comes from royal dining traditions that were served to the Emperor with each dish originating from a different region or Korea. The presentation and taste were attributed to the status of the region, essentially giving the Emperor a report without having to make a personal visit
- The spread of Confucianism’s five virtues influenced Korean cuisine to follow the oriental rule of five flavors – sweet, hot, sour, salt, and bitter; also to utilize five colors in each dish – red, yellow, green, white, and black
You can find plenty of delicious Korean dishes on foodpanda to get an authentic taste of Korea locally in Singapore.
NY Night Market
Try the Pork Steak dish, prepared with a smoky grilled pork fillet and served with stir-fried Korean glass noodles, kimchi and a tangle of spring onion salad. The combination of so many Korean flavors in one dish makes it a favorite meal at the restaurant.
Take advantage of free delivery at Twins and get your hands on the Kimchi Jun, one of the premier Korean street food options on the menu. Kimchi is the traditional dish revamped to make it a modern favorite for foodies. It consists of a Korean kimchi pancake with squid and hot spices.
Korean Hotpot BBQ
It’s no secret what you can expect from the Korean Hotpot BBQ. The entire menu is filled with tasty options for designing your perfect Korean BBQ meal. Choose from the variety of meats and seafood then select your vegetable side dishes. You’ll be glad you ordered this world-famous Korean cuisine.