Spring is a time for new beginnings, and in Korean cuisine, it's a season for fresh, light, and healthy ingredients that reflect the beauty of nature.
We explore the flavors and ingredients that make Korean food in spring so special. we'll introduce you to some of the most popular Korean dishes that Koreans enjoy during the springtime. Whether you're hosting a springtime gathering or looking for healthy meal ideas, our blog has something for everyone.
Doenjang Jjigae is a traditional Korean soup made with fermented soybean paste, vegetables, and often some form of protein, such as tofu, seafood, or meat. It's a staple dish in Korean cuisine and is known for its rich and savory flavor profile. The base of the soup is made with doenjang, a fermented soybean paste that gives the soup its signature umami taste. The paste is combined with broth, garlic, onions, and a variety of vegetables such as zucchini, potatoes, and mushrooms. The soup can also be made with pork or beef for added protein. Doenjang Jjigae is typically served with a bowl of steamed rice and a variety of side dishes, such as kimchi and pickled vegetables. It's a hearty and comforting dish that's perfect for spring , but can be enjoyed year-round. Aside from its delicious taste, Doenjang Jjigae is also known for its health benefits. The fermented soybean paste is rich in probiotics, which can aid in digestion and promote gut health. It's also a good source of protein, fiber, and vitamins, making it a nutritious and satisfying meal.
Jjolmyeon is a popular Korean dish that consists of chewy wheat noodles mixed with a spicy and tangy sauce, along with various fresh vegetables and sometimes meat or seafood. The dish is known for its unique texture and bold flavor profile.
The noodles used in Jjolmyeon are thicker and chewier than regular Korean noodles, giving the dish a satisfying and filling texture. The spicy and tangy sauce is made with a combination of gochujang (Korean red pepper paste), vinegar, sugar, and other seasonings, creating a sweet, savory, and spicy taste that is both refreshing and addictive.
Typical vegetables used in Jjolmyeon include shredded lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, and sprouts, which add a crunch and freshness to the dish. Some versions of Jjolmyeon also include boiled eggs, pork belly, or seafood like squid or shrimp.
It's a refreshing and satisfying dish that's perfect for the spring and summer months, but can be enjoyed all year round.
물회 (Mulhoe) is a Korean dish that is typically consumed during the warmer months, particularly in the spring and summer. The dish is a type of raw fish soup that is served cold and refreshing, making it a popular choice for hot days. Mulhoe is made by slicing raw fish, typically a white fish such as sea bass or flounder, into thin strips and then placing it in a bowl of ice water. The fish is then seasoned with salt and vinegar and garnished with thinly sliced vegetables such as cucumber, radish, and chili pepper. The broth for mulhoe is typically made by mixing water, vinegar, soy sauce, and sometimes gochujang (Korean red pepper paste) to create a flavorful and slightly spicy base. The broth is poured over the fish and vegetables, creating a cold and refreshing soup that is perfect for summertime. Mulhoe is often served as an appetizer or as a light meal, and it is commonly accompanied by side dishes such as rice, kimchi, and pickled vegetables. The dish is known for its fresh and clean flavors, as well as its health benefits, as raw fish is high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids.
Gyeran-jjim (계란찜) is a popular Korean dish made from steamed eggs. It is a classic Korean side dish (banchan) that is often served as a part of a traditional Korean meal, but can also be enjoyed on its own as a snack or light meal. To make gyeran-jjim, beaten eggs are mixed with water or broth, and seasoned with salt and other ingredients such as chopped scallions, garlic, or sesame oil. The mixture is then poured into a heat-resistant dish or small individual bowls and steamed until the eggs are set and fluffy. The texture of gyeran-jjim is often described as somewhere between custard and scrambled eggs. The dish has a mild, delicate flavor that is enhanced by the addition of other ingredients, such as vegetables or seafood. Some popular variations include gyeran-jjim with spinach, mushroom, or shrimp. Gyeran-jjim is considered a healthy dish because it is high in protein and low in calories. It is also easy to make and can be prepared in a variety of ways to suit different tastes. In Korea, gyeran-jjim is often served with rice and other side dishes as a part of a balanced meal, but it can also be enjoyed as a snack or appetizer.
Samgyetang (삼계탕) is a Korean chicken soup that is popular during the hot and humid summer months. It is a hot and nutritious soup that is made with a whole young chicken, ginseng, jujube, garlic, and other ingredients. The chicken is stuffed with sweet rice, garlic, and ginseng and then boiled in a broth made from water and Korean herbs such as dried Chinese dates, ginger, and Korean ginseng. The soup is then simmered for a few hours until the chicken is tender and the broth has become rich and flavorful. Samgyetang is often served with various side dishes such as kimchi, sliced green onions, salt and pepper, and other Korean pickles. It is believed to have medicinal properties and is often consumed as a way to combat fatigue and the summer heat. Samgyetang is also a popular dish for special occasions such as Korean Thanksgiving (Chuseok) or Lunar New Year (Seollal). The dish is considered a delicacy and is often served in restaurants specializing in samgyetang.