Travelling in South Korea (or living in Korea!) is always a joy no matter what time of the year, but there is something very special about summertime on the Korean peninsula. And when the snow melts and the sun comes out, Koreans like nothing more than to chill with some good food (and Soju).
Naengmyeon is a traditional Korean dish of long and thin handmade noodles, served in a tangy iced broth, with a boiled egg and cold boiled beef. Traditionally, these long noodles would be eaten without cutting, as they symbolised longevity of life and good health.
Dotorimuk may only be a form of jelly made from acorn starch but when sprinkled with copious amounts of kimchi and pickles this side dish is eaten throughout Korea in the summer, as a treat before the main meal.
Jangei Gui is the Korean name for grilled eel. This is a tasty fishy treat that is perfect for summertime, and it can be found in great quantity throughout the street food markets of Seoul.
Oi Muchim is a spicy cucumber salad that is devoured by Koreans in the heat. Usually a side dish (banchan), it is preferred on the hottest days of the year as the spiciness helps people sweat and thus stay cooler!
Subak Hwachae is a simple watermelon punch, that is drank in hot weather to keep cool. The best version is the punch that is served inside the sliced half of watermelon – very Instagrammable!
Samgyetang is a famous ginseng chicken soup that has been exported all over Asia. This hot soup is always served as a summer favourite – and the hotter the day, the more this dish gets eaten!
Patbingsu cannot be ignored when talking about summertime snacks in Korea. Traditionally an after-dinner treat, this is a famous Korean shaved ice dessert topped with fresh fruit and red beans. It is no surprise that Koreans eat Patbingsu by the bucket load!
Whatever you decide to eat when travelling in Korea this summer, make sure you take plenty of pictures for Instagram, as I find Korean cuisine very photogenic (not to mention very tasty, too!).