BY MARIANNE ALVAREZ
People who haven’t tried watching Kdramas or those who haven’t “crossed the point of no return” have always wondered what it is with Kdramas that millions of fans around the globe are so addicted about.
Indisputably, we are here to repeatedly swoon over our favorite stars that gloriously grace our screens as we sit down to binge watch whatever tickles our fancy. We are here for the beautifully written stories in various genres that keep us glued to our seats for hours on end (sending finger hearts to those who forgot their laundry in the washer or those who overcooked their meals while focusing on reading the subtitles).
After binge-watching K-dramas, we’re sure you’d also like to binge on Korean food goodness! We don’t know about you but there may be something about the way the Koreans eat their food or how simply appetizing their food looks on television that makes you want to eat too. One thing’s for sure though, we are dying to try ALL of them!
Get to know some of the dishes that frequent almost every other smashing episode of Kdramas:
Instant or not, who would think that we could go gaga over mild to super spicy noodles? You may think that there’s nothing extraordinary about it, except when you add egg, cheese or a little bit more meat but seeing how the Koreans eat their noodles with gusto, makes you crave for it a little more than you’d like to admit.
2) Korean BBQ or Samgyupsal
Where do Koreans usually go after office hours or when they meet up with their friends or colleagues for some drunken fun? You got it! They are mostly seen grilling those juicy meats on their own dining tables. Plus they eat directly from the grill that makes it seem even more tempting!
3) Korean Fried Chicken
Hands up for those who get satisfaction by just seeing Koreans bite into a big crunchy chicken piece! Double hands up for us as we imagine at the same time how that crispy yet juicy piece of meat tastes like in different flavors, toppings and dips! Yum!
This dish, a smorgasbord of rice, spinach, cucumbers, bean sprouts, beef or other meat, chili paste, egg and whatever sautéed vegetables or toppings your palate fancies, is fairly easy to make despite how complex it may look. You can easily make it at home and when you do, get ready to dig in because well, you will dig into a big bowl. Literally!
5) Sundubu Jiggae or Korean Soft Tofu Stew
This dish is one of Korea’s top comfort food. Usually rich in spicy broth, seafood or any meat of your choice, Kimchi, soft tofu, onions and other tasty ingredients, it can definitely always make you crave for more!
6) Miyeok-guk or Seaweed Soup
Also known as the ‘birthday soup’ among Koreans, this is unquestionably a staple dish on someone’s birthday menu be it a simple or a big celebration. It is typically served with rice, grilled meat and banchans or commonly known as an array of side dishes. It’s also what is served to mothers who just gave birth so they could immediately regain health.
7) Kimbap (aka Gimbap)
This dish is similar to Japanese sushi rolls with a sweeter twist. It is made from vegetables, fish or meat and steamed white rice rolled in gim or dried seaweed sheets. It is usually cut and served in bite-sized slices but can also be eaten as is like how some Koreans do on Kdramas when they’re stress eating!
This spicy veggie goodness is a Kdrama staple. It’s great to eat on its own or paired with just about any other dish you can think of as it instantly gives it a unique and delicious twist. And based on what we’ve seen onscreen so far, it can even be partnered with a steaming bowl of Ramyeon!
Another noodle dish, but without the spicy, savory broth. This delightful dish is covered with a thick paste of Chunjang or black bean sauce, garnished with diced pork and vegetables. With just a small amount of spiciness, be ready to be overwhelmed by its rich and powerful flavor that will surely make you come back for more.
It’s like our pancit but sweet and more tasty. Cooked in sesame oil and sprinkled with sesame seeds and marinated meat, this is perfect for parties or just when you are super duper hungry.
11) Korean Street Foods
We’ve also often wondered about the different kinds of street foods that keep on teasing our palates while binge watching Kdramas. And just when we thought we’ve seen it all, they introduce us to yet another form of street food that our cravings just never end! Some of these street foods include:
- Tteokbokki – Usually found in eateries across South Korea. This dish is made of Korean rice cakes drenched in chili sauce with a strong sweet flavor. Other ingredients may include fish cakes, boiled eggs and scallions with a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Just the smell of it will truly make your mouth water.
- Odeng – Fish Cakes served on a stick usually served with broth. Perfect to eat when it’s smoking hot!
- Corned Dog – Available in the most unusual servings. You just cannot miss this one!
- Gyeranppang – Egg bread
- Hotteok – Stuffed pancake
- Bungeoppang – Fish-shaped red bean carp bread
- Pajeon – Crispy savory pancake
- Sundae – Nope, this is not the cool and creamy sundae you dream about on hot sunny days. It’s actually a kind of sausage made from boiled cow or pig’s intestines with various ingredients for stuffing.
There you go! It’s up to you now if you want to keep on drooling in front of your TVs or start scouting for the best Korean dishes available for you! And while you’re at it, don’t forget to pair it with that one alcoholic drink that seems to just go about everything the Koreans eat. That’s right: the legendary Soju! Just a bottle or two wouldn’t hurt and if you just can’t help it, you can always sip a bowl of Haejang-guk or the so-called Hangover Soup after!