in Korea kicks off in June,
and brings with it periods of
heavy rain that last until the
middle of July and muggy temperatures.
When these hot and humid days
come, people stay inside, where
air conditioners keep everyone
cool, or visit parks, recreation
centers, and water parks in
order to make the most of the
hot weather and have some fun.
there is a way for Koreans and
foreigners to beat the heat
and stay healthy this summer.
Eating! Not just anything, but
eating Korean dishes prepared
especially for the summer! Read
on to find out which foods will
restore your strength and refresh
your spirit this summer.
|Soup for the Soul: Chicken Ginseng Soup, Samgyetang
In Korea, the hottest period of the year is known as
Boknal, which roughly translated
means “the dog days of summer”.
Boknal last for about
a month, and during this time
Koreans eat healthy food to
try and keep their strength
up in the hot weather. The first
day of Boknal is known as Chobok,
and this year it falls on July
14th. On Chobok, Koreans traditionally
eat Chicken Ginseng Soup (Samgyetang).
Samgyetang is very high in nutritional
value, it rejuvenates the body
remarkably well. The dish is
prepared by removing the chicken’s
internal organs, adding garlic,
glutinous rice, jujube, ginger,
licorice root, and various other
types of herbs, and boiling
all the ingredients together.
The dish is a great way to conquer
fatigue and exhaustion during
the hot months.
it might seem strange to eat
a hot dish during summer time,
you could say that Samgyetang
“fights fire with fire”. Koreans
believe that if you heat up
the inside of your body with
a hot soup, then the outside
of your body will actually feel
cooler. You can also add a number
of different ingredients to
this dish. Though the price
may be a little steep, you may
want to try the extremely nutritious
→ More about Samgyetang (Chicken Ginseng Soup)
|Sweet , Spicy, and Chewy Chicken, Jjimdak
With samgyetang (chicken ginseng soup) and jjimdak
(seasoned and simmered chicken),
chicken is definitely a quintessential
summer food. Jjimdak is made
with chicken that’s already
been prepared, hot peppers,
mushrooms, carrots, and other
vegetables. At the end, starch
noodles are added and the dish
is cooked again at a high temperature.
This dish is characterized by
its spiciness, so it is good
to eat with dongchimi (watery
radish kimchi) on the side.
|Regain lost appetite with broiled eel, Jangeo-gui
When summer comes, it is easy to lose your appetite.
If you are feeling low, broiled
eel provides a great boost.
Eel contains Vitamin A and Vitamin
E and is very good for blood
circulation. It is also believed
to be helpful in boosting stamina.
Many visitors that travel to
Korea enjoy this dish.
are two ways of cooking Jangeogui,
broiled eels. One way is to
first season it with various
spices such as hot pepper paste,
sugar, soybean sauce, minced
garlic and ginger, sesame oil,
and then grill the eel. The
other way is to season the eel
only with salt and then grill
it. Jangeo-deopbap, rice
topped with broiled eel is also
a popular dish. The towns of
Pungcheon and Paju are famous
for Jangeogui. Pungcheon
in Jeollabuk-do province is
on an estuary, so eals caught
in Pungcheon are very delicious.
There are also many famous Jangeogui
restaurants in Paju in Gyeonggi-do
Province, which is on the outskirts
|Cool Down with Cold Noodles, Naengmyeon & Kongguksu
During summer, Koreans enjoy
eating cold noodles, cold bean
noodles, and Kimchi noodles.
Naengmyeon (Cold noodles), made
from buckwheat, are enjoyed
by many Koreans, and the dish
was once a specialty item in
North Korea, where it was actually
eaten during the winter season.
North Korean style noodles,
Pyeongyang Naengmyeon and Hamheung
Naengmyeon, have now become
famous throughout Korea. There
are two types of cold noodles:
mul-naengmyeon (buckwheat noodles
in chilled broth) and bibim-naengmyeon(cold
buckwheat noodles with vegetables,
meat and sauce). Mul- naengmyeon
includes sliced beef, boiled
egg, cucumber, and pear, while
bibim-naengmyeon also has hot
and spicy seasoning.
Kongguksu (noodles in chilled
white bean soup), which is made
out of ground beans, is another
good dish for those who have
lost their appetite. Kimchi
noodles, which are made from
a mixture of kimchi broth and
meat broth, is also a summer
specialty. kimchi noodles have
the special taste of kimchi,
which is cooked for a long time,
and meat is added to enhance
the flavor of the dish. Rice
can be added instead of noodles
to make it even heartier.
→ About Korean noodles
|Bingsu, ice yogurt dessert with sweet red beans and fruit toppings.
As well as regular ice cream, a traditional dish
called “Bingsu” is very popular
in Korea during summer. Shaved
ice is mixed with fruit, rice
cakes, milk, ice cream, and
syrup. Other ingredients are
also added to create different
types of Bingsu. Depending on
which ingredient you add more
of, the Bingsu has a different
name, such as Sweet Red Bean
Bingsu, Fruit Bingsu, Green
tea Bingsu, and Coffee Bingsu.
If you want to try sweet
red bean Bingsu with its original
pure taste, then the café
Meal Top is strongly recommended.
The key to the success of this
café was that it stuck
to the traditional way of making
Bingsu. The café does
not use artificial food additives.
Instead, it uses only well boiled
red beans and fresh fruit as
ingredients. Meal Top is located
on 5th floor of the Hyundai
Department Store in Apgujeong-dong
in Seoul. Also, <O'Sulloc
Tea House> is famous for
green tea bingsu and the café
<Ice Berry> is famous
for its varied fruit toppings.
Recently a string of
low fat foods have been introduced
into Korea, of these low fat
yogurt is very popular in Korea.
<Red Mango>, where low-fat
yogurt and yogurt bingsu are
sold, is very popular with people
who are on a diet.