For lunch Jungwon took us to a small Korean restaurant this is what he had:
On the left: bibimbap, which is a typical Korean dish. It’s basically a heap of rice topped with a bunch of vegetables and usually some kind of meat or seafood, in a hot stone bowl. You’re supposed to stir the whole lot while it’s still sizzling in your stone bowl, cooking it on the sides and add as much chili pepper paste as you can stand. Apparently, they also have cold versions of bibimbap, but I’m not sure how that works, because I’ve never had it.
In the middle: jeon (the Japanese call this chijimi), which is similar to a Dutch pancake, as it’s thick and filled with a lot of stuff. Only the stuff we put in our pancakes is very different from the stuff the Koreans put in theirs. For example, we like cheese and apples, the Koreans like shrimp and fermented cabbage.
On the right: japchea, which are cellophane noodles (they’re see-through, hence the name) stir fried with a bunch of vegetables and beef in sesame oil. This has been my favorite Korean dish ever since I first tried it in San Francisco at Jungwon’s cousin’s place.
We were very tired from dragging ourselves from one sightseeing spot to another and very hungry because regular lunch hour had already come and gone by the time we finally sat down for it. So we were very pleased with our chairs and our food. Especially the bibimbap was very spicy, as it should be, and my poor Japanese boyfriend was sweating his face off while eating it. Japanese cuisine is all about mild and subtle tastes, so it was quite an experience for Yasu. But that’s why we’re here in Seoul, to experience non-Japanese things.
Dessert was American ice cream from Cold Stone, which we also have in Japan, but we never go there. Besides it reminded us of Emory, because they had one in Emory village, right outside the campus gates. It wasn’t bad, but we were too full from lunch, so we had a hard time finishing it.