More Culinary Adventures in Seoul

Anyone who has read my blog will know that I love food and that my wife and I both love to try new and different cuisines.  So I felt very lucky that last week I was able to participate in two wonderful food events. 

On Tuesday I visited the U.S. Pavilion at the Seoul Food Show.  Because I wanted to show my support to all of the U.S. companies doing business or seeking to do business in Korea (and because there were some very delicious items to be sampled) I made sure to visit all 52 booths.  I thoroughly enjoyed tasting a variety of meats and cheeses, drinking some delicious coffee and tea, and visiting some smaller vendors who were marketing items such as rice and soybeans.  I tried some U.S. potatoes, and the U.S. Potato Board kindly gave me a plastic squeezable potato that I am using to help with the rehab of my left hand.

Meeting American exhibitors at the Seoul Food Show

Some of the U.S. exhibitors had very interesting stories.  One gentleman in the coffee business started out not to make a profit, but to raise money to fund social programs that he is helping with in Ethiopia.   And two great guys are bringing the delicious flavor of their Brooklyn fine grain bagels to Korea.  One thing many of the American vendors mentioned was how great it was to have professional, strong partners in the Korean market.  Illustrating the success of this event, the American exhibitors told us that, collectively, they had made over 400 solid business contacts here in Korea.  Huge thanks to KOTRA, All World Exhibition, and Oak Overseas for all their work in putting this event together!

Learning more about these Americans’ businesses

Last Thursday I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the Traditional Korean Liquor and Food Festival.  I told the hosts and other participants how much I enjoyed my trips to Andong [] and to Gyeongju [] where I was able to eat  many traditional Korean delicacies.  When we met a few months ago, Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs Lee Dong-phil  suggested that I incorporate tasting traditional Korean liquors into some of my trips.  I took him up on his very good counsel and visited some facilities on my travels - as a result, I love to drink Andong Soju and Gyodong Beob-ju.  I even served some at Sejun’s 백일 (baek-il) [].  At the Traditional Korean Liquor and Food Festival, they did ask me a very tough question though - what my favorite Korean food is.  This is truly impossible to answer!  I love it all and really enjoyed some bulgogi and wonderful kimchi pancakes with others at the event.

Learning how to make Korean ‘Makgeolli’

Back to traditional American cuisine, for you food lovers out there, please check out my wife Robyn’s interview with the JoongAng Daily where she shares one of my favorite recipes, “Surf and Turf.” [] There’s even a video on their website that can help you learn how to make it.  It’s one of our favorite dishes to eat during the cold winter months.  And, since I love to cook when I have time, I am looking forward to trying to make this at home very soon.  Please send us your comments and pictures of how it turned out if you make it!

Try Robyn’s recipe for Surf and Turf!

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