Category Archives: South Korea 韩国

Eat Till You Drop @ South Korea (Part 3) – The Best @ Jeju

Spicy Seafood Stew (Haemultang)

I still cannot forget the taste of the impressive pot of seafood stew we had in Jeju. Despite us having just had a full breakfast of porridge and such, we decided to order the big pot costing KRW 45,000/- (about SGD55/-), hey come on, there’s 5 of us and there’s only 100 pots a day! We just had to clear some stomach space for it.
Mike’s friend recommended us to this restaurant at Sunrise Peak (Seongsan Ilchulbong). A traditional Korean restaurant where you have to sit cross-leg on the platform with low dining table.
The restaurant to go! 100 seafood pot a day!
The bubbling pot of seafood stew was served on a stove set at high boil. We were all in awe.. a total of about 12 baby abalones, still alive, squirming away. There’s also a big squid, which I believe was still alive too. There’s more surprise in this pot as you dip your ladle in.. a bountiful harvest of seafood here – yabbies, flower crabs, clams..etc. All for just 50 bucks!
The waiter later will flip all the abalones over to cook and viola, we were all ready to tuck in.
The baby abalones were really fresh and springy to bite but don’t let abalones cook for too long, else it will be too tough and rubbery.
With so much seafood shimmering in the pot, the broth was really tasty! Spicy, yet refreshingly rich in taste. Be prepared to sweat throughout the entire meal!
The heavenly no other place seafood pot!
We had another round of spicy seafood stew at a restaurant next to our hotel at Seogwipo after our Hallasan expedition. The pot we had cost about KRW55,000 and there was about 20 baby abolones! A big octopus, with yabbies, squids, clams and lots and lots of soybean sprouts. The broth, however was not as shiok as the one we had at Sunrise Peak.
Another round of spicy seafood stew
Abalone Rice Porridge (Juk)
Before our heavenly spicy seafood stew, we actually had our breakfast opposite the seafood stew restaurant. We ordered abalone porridge which was so tasty and flavourful! I think the Koreans do their porridge really well.
Abalone porridge 
Sea Urchin Seaweed Soup (Miyeokguk)
Also ordered the sea urchin seaweed soup. Must be the proximity of the sea. Seafood here are all so fresh. There’s so much sea urchin in the soup and the sea urchin taste so fresh and sweet. Highly recommended!
Sea Urchin soup
Hairtail Fish (Galchi)
We see hairtail fish everywhere in Jeju since it is found in the water around Jeju. There are a few cooking method for the hairtail fish. We had it grilled and braised.
Nicely salted and grilled. Crispy outside with the meat soft and sweet.
Salted grilled Galchi
Braised in spicy hot sauce, the sauce taste good especially with their pearl like rice.
Spicy braised Galchi
Black Pork (Heukdoeji)
That’s what Jeju is famous for, said to be found exclusively in Jeju! Black pork especially BBQ-ed! There’s even a Black Pork street in Jeju so that you will not be conned! The hair of the black pig are usually not plucked out cleanly so that diners can be sure that they are eating the real black pig. After BBQ-ing, the hair will melt under the heat
We do not have the time to travel up to Jeju-si to have black pork there as we were based in Seogwipo-si. Nevertheless, we still managed to find a restaurant, recommended by Mike’s friend. We had a hard time finding the restaurant as this round our car GPS failed us. In the end we realised that it was very near to our hotel — Saeseom Galbi.
The meat was not marinated, so after BBQ-ing, will usually put in lots of sauce and stuff from the side dishes and wrapped it with the vegetables given. I wondered if we over cook it, I did not find it really good.
BBQ black pork, see the black hair?
BBQ-ing in-progress
I guess the winner was the beef! Well-marinated and we can’t help it but to order a 2nd round!
Really good beef!
Another place to satisfy black pork craving will be here! Seriously, I find it’s the best in Jeju! A little stall located just next the the Mysterious Road, we called it the Ninja Black Pork! Forget about the Mysterious Road, just come here to eat the black pork!
Nicely flavoured and BBQ-ed. The meat so soft it can almost melt in your mouth. Yums, I am salivating now as I am writing this post! Gosh! I missed the meat now!!!
The Ninjas!
It’s melt in your mouth black pork!
Fresh seafood at Jeongbang Falls
At the waterfall, you will see Ajumma there serving out the seafood, some look really weird.
Fresh seafood
Not cheap, KRW20,000 for this plate with 3 types of seafood. You can really taste the freshness of the sea! Kenn likes it but I find the clam-like stuff to tough for bites.
Fresh seafood on the go!
We did try other food in Jeju, but these are my favourite and the must eat when you are there. 🙂

 

Advertisements

Eat Till You Drop @ South Korea (Part 2) – Gwangjang Market

The heavy breakfast (or meal # 1) at Gwangjang Market

Gwangjang Market was first established in 1905 and is Korea’s oldest remaining daily market. The market is famed for its food selection and is also well known for its extensive selection of vendors offering silks and tailored Hanbok.

Wide selection of fabric to custom made Hanbok

2 criss-crossing corridors are the booths and stalls selling variety of Korean street foods like the Bindaetteok, Gimbap, etc. The market is bustling with activity where Korean workers flock to the market all year round to sit at the benches lining each stall to eat.

Gwangjang Market
At one of the stall
One of the nicest food there has to be the Bindaetteok, a Korean-style pancake made of ground mung bean cooked in frying pan till crispy. We ordered the original version and the one with pork added in. The pork Bindaetteok, crispy with tender juicy meat won the battle.
Bindaetteok – Mung bean pancake, with pork too!
Frying the Bindaetteok
Another Korea national food – Gimbap. Stuff with carrot, pickled daikon radish and rice. Rolled and tightly wrapped in a sheet of seaweed and then sliced into bite-sized. We ordered 1, but found the taste so-so thou it made a good filling food when hungry.
Gimbap
Another signature dish here will be the Sundae. Made from pig intestines stuffed with glutinous rice, pork blood and some other ingredients. Surprisingly nice, it was not dry, quite “juicy”, “spongy” and soft for bite. Very filling too.
Alongside is the pig trotters, quite fatty. The ajumma gave us so much.. we can’t finish.
Sundae – Blood sausages
Pig trotters
Pig trotters

This is nice although it’s just a side dish – Japchae. Cellophane noodles, mushrooms, carrots, spinach, onions and leeks.

Japchae
Dumplings filled with leeks and pork meat. Steaming hot, I find it ok only but Zhix loves it.
Dumpling

There are also stores selling daily groceries and snacks. Very fascinating.

For side dishes
Soy crab for sale
~ To be continued ~

Eat Till You Drop @ South Korea (Part 1)

11 days of gluttony in South Korea. From breakfast, lunch, dinner daily to meal 1, meal 2 up to meal 5 or 6. This was how much we ate during the 11 days of the trip. However, there’s just too many type of food in South Korea, despite our 5 – 6 meals per day, we could only ate this much, guess not even 1/3 or it!

能吃是福。11天从早吃到晚,道道的美食,道道的精彩!

Here are some of the memorable food we ate.

莫名其妙的海鲜? Our first meal in Korea was this.. really, what’s this? The English menu said it’s seafood. The couple seated at the next table were eating it and it looked delicious. Looked spicy hot , could be great for this cold 1st night in Seoul. Not cheap thou – KRW44,000 (about SGD 50).

The dish came with huge serving. Originally thought it’s noodles but it’s actually soybean sprouts. Abundance octopus, small pieces of crab meat and many many unknown stuff inside. Some looked brainy, some taste really yucky.

Big portion spicy seafood casserole
What’s all those brain look-alike stuff??
Probably we were too adventurous… till now I still don’t know what’s the name of this dish.

Eating raw octopus! (Sannakji)

When you come to Korea, you just got to try this! Eating live small octopus! We randomly walked into this little restaurant at Gwangjung market where there’s a tank of octopus swimming. Ordered a small octopus at KRW15,000 (about SGD18). The little octopus was cut into small pieces, lightly seasoned with sesame oil and served immediately. Although cut into pieces, it was still moving! The suction cups on the arm pieces are still active thus care should be taken when eating. The active suction cups can cause swallowed pieces of arm to stick to the mouth or throat. It can be choking hazard if intoxicated.

The guys decided that they should drink soju to intoxicate the octopus… blah~~ anyway after their 1st piece, both gave a thumb-up! The girls on seeing this, decided to try… Wow.. I must say it’s yummy! Maybe is the seasoning? but the octopus was chewy and sweet. I try to put it between my front teeth and kept biting and chewing it until it is really to be swallow.

Not long, we finished the whole plate and the restaurant staff were all quite amazed. Haa..

Soy Sauce Marinated Crab (Ganjang Gejang)

It must be the yummiest stuff we ate in Korea! So yummy that we ordered another one despite the price.. KRW30,000 for one small crab. That’s how expensive it was.

The meat was firm and sweet. At first I thought it will be very salty since it was dunk in the soy sauce for awhile, but no. The soy sauce actually added flavour and complement the sweetness of the crab meat. I did not eat the roe, but according to kakis who ate, they said it was heavenly!

I read that the key to this cuisine is the marinade, it must be prepared just right so that it will not be too salty for consumption and yet strong enough for the blue crabs to ferment properly without strong odour. So that’s how complicated and so warrant this price tag.

 

The right way of eating was actually to use the shell as plate, put a spoonful of rice, add the meat and roe, drizzle the soy sauce mixed it and eat… aaahhhh…..

Ginseng Chicken Soup (Samgyetang)

The one soup to drink in cold weather, although the Koreans believe in the saying “Fight heat with heat” which means eating boiling hot dishes in hot summer days as the nutrients in our body can easily be lost through excessive sweating and physical exertion during the hot summer..

A whole chicken is stuffed with glutinous rice, ginseng, and various ingredients and slow cooked for a long time. Like the chicken soup, which is considered to help common sickness, samgyetang is also known be cure physical ailments and prevent sickness as well.

Samgyetang

~ To be continued ~