Travel n Tour

The best local food in Seoul

Seoul

Seoul is a city of food. It’s not just about the delicious dishes served at restaurants but also about the street vendors who sell their goods on every corner and the local markets where you can find fresh ingredients for your cooking. The city has many different types of cuisine: Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Western, etc., so there will be something to suit everyone’s taste buds! The most exciting thing about Local Food in Seoul is that it can experience authentic culture through its unique flavors. You don’t have to go far from home to enjoy this culinary adventure! The best local food in Seoul include

*Rice cakes in sauce

If you visit Seoul during wintertime, try rice cake with sweet red bean paste or savory black sesame paste. These rice cakes are prevalent among locals because they’re easy to make and affordable. They come in various shapes, square, round, triangular, oval, heart-shaped, etc. Rice cakes are usually eaten plain without any accompaniment. However, if you want to add some flavor, you may dip them into sauces made of soybean paste, honey syrup, or sugar syrup. If you like spicy foods, use chili pepper powder instead of soybean paste. Another option would be to mix both sauces.

*Kimchi soup

This is another local food that is popular among Koreans. Kimchi soup is kimchi mixed with beef broth. This dish originated from China and was brought over by Joseon Dynasty immigrants. There are several variations of kimchi soup depending on what part of Korea you visit. For example, people living near the sea prefer seafood-based soups, while those inland eat meat-based ones. In addition, each region has its specialties. Some examples include Jeju Island, Gyeonggi Province, Gangwon Province, and Chungcheongbukdo Province.

*Ssamjang

Another type of traditional Korean food is ssamjang which means “salted fermented anchovy.” Ssamjang is one of the oldest preserved condiments in South Korea. It dates back more than 2,000 years ago, first introduced to the royal court. Today, ssamjang is still widely used in daily meals. It’s often added to side dishes or consumed alone as a snack. Salted anchovies are soaked in water overnight before being boiled until soft to prepare ssamjang. Then, they are mashed up using a mortar and pestle. Afterward, salt and other seasonings are added to give it a distinctive tangy flavor. Garlic juice is sometimes squeezed into the mixture to enhance the aroma. Finally, the resulting liquid is strained and stored in glass jars.

*Cold noodles

Noodles are considered a staple food in Asia. Although cold noodle dishes vary according to region, they share common characteristics. Cold noodles are typically prepared by boiling dried wheat flour in hot stock. Once cooked, these noodles are drained and seasoned with scallions, green onions, sesame oil, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sometimes crushed peanuts. When you get to Seoul, Cold noodles are available everywhere, including fast-food chains, coffee shops, convenience stores, and supermarkets. Popular varieties include dakkochi, gimbap, jiyeon, and bibimbap. Dakkochi is similar to spaghetti, except it comes in long strands rather than short pieces. Bibimbab consists of white radish, eggplant, cabbage, carrots, and tofu. Jajeon is a kind of pancake made from buckwheat flour batter. And finally, kimbap is an Asian pizza consisting of lettuce leaves filled with vegetables and topped with shredded nori seaweed.

*Ddukbokki

If you can visit Seoul, don’t miss this delicious dessert called Ddukbokki. The name translates to ‘stir-fried squid’ but refers to small deep-fried octopus balls in a gochujang bowl. Traditionally, Ddukbokki is made by frying sliced potatoes, chopped onion, and spring onions. But nowadays, there are many different ways to cook this dish. You can either stir-fry the ingredients separately or combine them at once. Another option is using instant ramen instead of potato to make the dough. However, if you want to try authentic Ddukbokki, order it from restaurants specializing in street foods because most vendors do not add any seasoning.

*Korean barbecue

This is another local dish that is popular among the locals. Koreans consider eating out on the streets to be part of their culture. This tradition has been passed down through generations and continues today. When ordering Kalbi, bulgogi, or Galbi, ask your server what cooking style they prefer. Kalbi is usually grilled over charcoal, while bulgogi is marinated and pan-fried. Korean barbecue is traditionally eaten outdoors, so choose a restaurant where you can enjoy the fresh air. Opt for steamed rice bowls or spicy chicken soup if you want something lighter.

* Octopus

In Seoul, people love to eat octopus. There are two types: regular octopuses and giant ones. They taste great, whether fried, braised, stewed, or raw. Some places offer only octopus; others serve various kinds of seafood together. One thing to note about octopuses is that their tentacles tend to fall off easily. So whenever possible, buy live octopuses rather than frozen ones. Octopus is a good protein source since it contains high amounts of iron, zinc, vitamin B12, selenium, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium. It also provides fiber, which helps lower cholesterol levels.

*Pork and potato soup

The best way to describe pork and potato soup is “comfort food.” Pork and potato soups have become very popular throughout Korea due to the harsh weather conditions. The soup often includes meat such as beef, mutton, duck, goose, etc., and vegetables like carrot, celery root, turnip, mushrooms, and bamboo Pork and potato soup are generally thickened using cornstarch or tapioca starch. Toppings may include groundnuts, grated cheese, minced shallots, diced tomatoes, chili peppers, and other seasonings. This comfort food has become one of my favorite meals when I’m under the weather.

Bottom line

These are just some of the best local foods in Seoul. As mentioned earlier, each region offers unique dishes that reflect the cultural background of the area. So if you’re planning to visit this incredible place, these are some of the local foods you should try. Grab your air ticket from Cathay Pacific for a smooth travel experience regarding traveling to this place.

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