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Korean cuisine

Korean cuisine is largely based upon rice, vegetables, and meats. Traditional Korean meals are noted for the number of side dishes (banchan) that accompany steam-cooked short-grain rice. Kimchi is served often, sometimes at every meal. Commonly used ingredients include sesame oil, doenjang (fermented bean paste), soy sauce, salt, garlic, ginger, pepper flakes and gochujang (fermented red chilli paste).

Ingredients and dishes vary by province. Many regional dishes have become national, and dishes that were once regional have proliferated in different variations across the country. The Korean royal court cuisine once brought all of the unique regional specialties together for the royal family. Meals are regulated by Korean cultural etiquette.

Korean Chilli Pepper Paste

Gochujang – Korean Chilli Pepper Paste

Gochujang is a savoury and pungent fermented Korean condiment made from red chilli, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans and salt. Traditionally, it has been naturally fermented over years in large earthen pots outdoors, more often on an elevated stone platform, called jangdokdae (장독대) in the backyard.

Korean BBQ Beef

Bulgogi – Korean BBQ Beef

Bulgogi is traditionally grilled, but pan-cooking has become popular as well. Whole cloves of garlic, sliced onions and chopped green peppers are often grilled or fried with the meat.

Gamja Jeon - Korean Potato Pancakes

Gamja Jeon – Korean Potato Pancakes

According to taste, the grated potato may be supplemented with finely shredded potatoes, carrots, onions or spring onions, sliced mushrooms, or garlic chives, which adds colour and crunchy texture to the dish. Gamjajeon can also be garnished with shredded fresh red and green chilli pepper.

Kimchi

Kimchi

Kimchi, also spelled gimchi, kimchee, or kim chee, is a traditional fermented Korean dish made of vegetables with a variety of seasonings. There are hundreds of varieties of kimchi made with a main vegetable ingredient such as napa cabbage, radish, spring onion, or cucumber. Kimchi is also a main ingredient for many Korean dishes such as kimchi stew (김치찌개; kimchi jjigae), kimchi soup (김칫국; kimchiguk), and kimchi fried rice (김치볶음밥; kimchi bokkeumbap).

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