Cycle 12- Item 155
9 (Wed) June 2021
-Changgok, Sujeong, Seongnam, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea-
with W and IZ
Korean-Chinese restaurants in Korea have limited capacity to develop new dishes. This is because the vast majority of owners, cooks, and servers are not Chinese, have never been to China, have never eaten authentic Chinese food, have never formally studied Chinese cooking. So-called “new” dishes are typically unimaginative variations on jjajang myeon or jjambbong.
Our current go-to neighborhood delivery joint is called “Shanghai,” even though nothing on their menu is Shanghainese. Chances are that they’ve never heard of xiaolongbao. DJ’s favorite dish is a seafood stir-fry over rice that’s simply called “teukbab (special rice),” suggesting that they don’t even have the vocabulary or imagination or interest to name new dishes. Having run out of ideas, apparently, they’ve now started adapting Korean dishes, like ojingeo deopbab.
Incidentally, the ojingeo deopbab was neither Korean nor Chinese, just kinda weird. We picked at the bits of squid, didn’t touch the gravy.
(See also FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN KOREA)