Friday, December 31, 2010

Traditional Korean New Year's Day Meal

Every New Year I get to eat a traditional Korean meal at my inlaws. I am not Korean but I sure do love Korean food so I am always excited to head over to my inlaws to eat.

There are 2 main dishes that are always featured at every New Year's Day meal.

First is duk gook which is rice cake soup or also known as rice dumpling soup. It represents a clean start and a new beginning for the new year.

Here are the rice cakes being soaked in water overnight before being used.

Here is the actual rice cake soup. In each region of Korea there are many variations of this soup. Here in this soup are rice cakes, pieces of dried seaweed, green onions and egg yolk.

Another traditional dish is galbi jjim which is braised short ribs. I'm not sure what this is suppose to represent but it sure is finger-licking goooooood.

Here were other dishes that were also made since my inlaws just love to stuff us silly.

This one is a seafood mix. I'm not sure what the name of it is. It includes shrimp, jellyfish, egg yolks, cucumbers, crab meat, egg whites, carrots and sweet Korean pears. You mix it all together and add some sort of wasabi sauce to the mix as well. It is very tasty and very light.

Here is another seafood dish. It consists of squid, shrimp, shiitake mushrooms, carrots, onions, snow peas, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, salt, pepper and cornstarch. This is when it was being stir-fried in the wok. It was a really big wok.

Then VOILA the finished look. It was really delicious.

Lastly, it wouldn't be a Korean meal without some banchan. The side dish here is freshly made kimchi. It was perfect. It didn't have to much of that vinegary taste since it was fresh and it wasn't marinated in the juices for too long.

To celebrate the new year, my sister-in-law bought champagne. This is not part of the Korean tradition. Just some alcohol to kick off a brand new year. It was pretty sweet. I liked it since I can't really drink the hard stuff and I don't like the taste of alcohol but this was good.

After the feast we had to bow on our hands and knees to our parents wishing them a happy, healthy and prosperous new year.

Then off we go waddling home with our full bellies stuffed to the max waiting for the next feast to come.


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