Thursday, April 1, 2010

K is for Korean

(This photo actually just shows a mix of friends :)
Korean Friends
Being in an international school, the boys have made friends from all over the world and especially enjoy their Korean classmates. (Koreans make up about 1/3 of their school population.) I wondered what drew my American boys particularly to the Koreans on campus, and decided that perhaps they were curious about the strong sense of cultural identity and community they saw. Then again, the Korean appeal could merely be that they're pretty nice kids and lots of fun to be around. (Or maybe it's the food the boys keep mooching.)

Anyway, because of this Korean influence in our world, our whole family loves Korean food.

Korean Food... Yum!
Our favorites are:
Bibimbap 비빔밥
or rice topped with mixed vegetables, possibly ground beef, and egg; served with a chili paste

Kimbap (Gimbap) 김밥
or Korean Sushi (rice & seaweed wrapped around vegetables and egg or cooked, processed meat of some kind - beef, hot dog, fish). I don't actually like the fishy, seaweed taste; but I'm the only one.

My boys love Kimchi (Kimchee, Gimchee) 김치 or spicy, pickled cabbage.

Korean BBQ...

tends to be a favorite with lots of people; especially when you get to grill the meat and vegetables yourself and then wrap them up in fresh green lettuce leaves. When we order, I also like to request a plate of Tteokbokki (Ddeokbokki, Topokki) 떡볶이 or sliced rice cake in a spicy sauce.

But my favorite Korean dish is possibly Curry Rice (Indo-Carae, Indian Curry Korean style) 카레라이스

The two images above both come from Migi's kitchen photo set by minwoo. You can find these recipes here.

Are you hungry yet? Because I'm kind of moving on to another interesting "K" word.

Kawaii (かわいい)* .... I learned a new "K" word while searching the web for Korean fashion images to use in this post. It means "loveable" or "adorable" and relates to things found particularly in, though not limited to, Asian pop culture (including entertainment, clothing, food, and toys). (Wikipedia)

I always thought the culture of cute spread to China from Korea, but I discovered that this phenomenon actually originated in Japan. The thing is that young Koreans (particularly girls) seem irrepressibly drawn to all things Kawaii; and then Chinese young people, strongly influenced by Korean pop culture (especially films and music), do the same. For a great article on Japan's cuteness culture check out Wikipedia here.

Another online source defines Kawaii as "cute" or "pretty," stating that it "generally relates to someone wearing clothing that appears to be made for young children or clothes that accentuate the cuteness of the individual. Ruffles and pastels or bright colors may be worn, and accessories often include oversize toys or bags featuring animated characters."

I've included some Kawaii fashion below as well as other cute things.

Kawaii Fashions for Spring

Kawaii Fashions for Fall

Japanese Kawaii by Yumi X Peach (And let me just say she is the king's wife of Kawaii swaps. You can check it our here.)

Kawaii erasers by rkeohane

I also consider ball-joint dolls to be a pretty fun example of Korean Kawaii; so I'll leave you with some cute bjd pics. You can find my Korean bjd, Uri, here along with a little more information.

These sweet photos were taken by Rainb0w-dolls.

As always thank you for stopping by! I love your visits.
Kamsahamnida 감사합니다!

I am participating in Alphabe-Thursday hosted by Jenny Matlock at on my tangent... You can join in and find other kool "k" posts here.

*귀여운 Kawaii (Korean) 可爱 Kawaii (Chinese Simp)

Jenny Matlock


  1. What an interesting culture. I wish we had more access to Korean food in our town. It looks delicious!

  2. My mom used to work with a couple of little old Korean ladies and they'd do potlucks at work... so when my mom brought home leftovers that was always the first thing I went for! So yummy!

  3. Kimbap is one of my favorite foods! My sister makes it all the time. She makes some other Korean food took, but none as great as Kimbap.

    Yummy K post!

  4. That looks like some interesting food. It's really neat that your family gets to experience so many things.

  5. When we first moved into our home 30 years ago, we came home to a little 3-yr. old Korean girl on our back porch steps. She spoke to us in very broken English. This little gal who is one year younger than my daughter, became her best friend all through their school years. Then they lost touch a bit during the college years. Now they are reunited again as young women with children. A blessed friendship. xo,

    P.S. Love Hello Kitty!

  6. Wow..wonderful K post, with great information and beautiful photos. I like Kim-Chi, but now that I'm older, it does a number in my tummy..

  7. hi steph!

    what a fun post that has made me not
    only hungry but very 'kawaii.'

    can't wait to use that phrase around my
    little fashionistas!

    "yay!" :)

  8. what wonderful K post. I sure learned a lot today..
    Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.

  9. Steph, what an interesting post. I'm curious about Korean food because I'm currently reading THE CALLIGRAPHER'S DAUGHTER and plan to post about it on Food for Thought. I need to make a food connection and cook something for my book review. Thanks for the ideas.
    Thanks for stopping by. I appreciate your visits and comments.

  10. hello kitty is huge, very cool post :D

  11. Hello kitty very interestink :)

  12. What a fascinating K post. The food made me hungry...I love korean food. It made me think I want to buy a Korean cookbook. Could you recommend one?

    And that fashion is really kute and fun!

    Very Kool post!

    Thanks for helping make Alplhabe-Thursday so interesting and fun!


  13. Korean food is one of my favorites. I am so lucky to be living in the San Francisco area
    ( some 33 years now ) where Asian food of every kind abounds ( really, ALL ethnicities are represented here ). My favorite Japanese restaurant is actually owned by Koreans and the owner, knowing my love for chap chae often fixes it for me, on the house!

  14. You really make me hungry with your Korean food;.... Do you also have recipes???? Thanks for this interesting post.

  15. I love love love Korean Barbecue or any kind of Korean food for that matter. I always try and eat at a Korean restaurant when I travel, there aren't any good ones where I live. Your post has got me excited about trying to make more own Korean food. to Amazon to look for cookbooks!

  16. Yum! I now have some new food to try! Thanks for whetting my appetite!

  17. brilliant post! I have never tried Korean food, it always just scares me a bit to try something that i have zero knowledge of ... now that i know a bit, i might give it a try! and i love the Kawaii culture, love cute, cute & cute!

  18. I think I would like to try kimchi! It sounds yummy.

  19. Very interesting post. I had to laugh when I saw the erasers. I buy them sometimes and use them as props in pictures with my dolls.

  20. For those of you looking for Korean food recipes I found these two sites when I was surfing the web.(I'm sure there are more out there.)

    The best option is to make a Korean friend :as some of you have already done :). NanaofNC,I love your story about this.

  21. Wow that was a lot of K's! My oldest daughter (going on 30) is an illustrator and is into Japanese animation. She loves Hello Kitty. I love the little dolls! Thanks for stopping by!

  22. Oh besides kimchi I have never really eaten Korean food. I so want to try it - I love anything wrapped in seaweed (except eel - it tastes hairy to me but I digress!) I am going to have to find a Korean restaurant in my area, crossing my fingers that I am successful. Great K Post!

  23. Wonderful K post! I would love to try some of the Koren food sometime.

  24. I was soo escited to see your Korean post! My husband used to be a Korean linguist in the Army, and we met many lovely Korean people. Later, as our kids were growing up, we had a couple of different Korean foriegn exchange students. When I went back to college, one of me favorite team project mates was a sweet Korean girl. And now, my lovely daughter has recently become engaged to a nice Korean boy (and we look forward to a future with little Korean grandbabies)! And the market below our apartment is having their Korean Independence week sales right now.

  25. Wow, I have never had Korean food but it looks delicious. I love all your pictures. The Kitty bus is my favorite. So colourful.'Happy Easter

  26. Hi Steph, thanks for stopping by This Old House.. your blog is terrific, I plan to follow along. I especially love when I can learn about a culture and a place on earth I might never visit.

    The food looks delicious!..

  27. Very interesting! Thanks for sharing all these cool things with us! Loved the pictures of the different types of Korean food.

  28. What an interesting post! I especially liked the description of kawaii, I've always wondered about Asian society's fascination with "cute" things. But my favorite part was the food - this all looks delicious and now I'm drooling :) Kathy

  29. what a great post...when my oldest was in grade school our neighbors were Korean and the kids played together a lot...we ate a lot of Korean food too...yum....
    I love the kawaii is so fun....

  30. I really enjoyed your fun Korean post :o) My mom is from the Philippines, but she had many Korean friends and so would make kimchee. Growing up, when my mom had kimchee out, I would pinch my nose and run away... but I grew out of that pretty quickly and love kimchee! When I make it now, I can hardly wait to eat it with -everything! even in a sandwich! I like it fresh.

    What awesome experiences you and your family have the opportunity to have while living overseas :o)

    My hubby had many flying training missions in Korea and on one of my old posts, there is a slideshow that has a photo of him surrounded my some young Korean kids...actually, that is one of the things he enjoyed doing-talking with the kids wherever he was deployed. It is on this post:

    Blessings & Aloha!
    (I am once again tardy! thankfully, sweet Jenny let me into now I'm trying to get to all the K posts, before it's time already for the L posts! I'd love if you get a chance to stop by mine.)

  31. Yummy, beautiful, informative for sure. I was taken with the bbq part and am sure they're way healtier than American. We wrap a bbq in bread, they use lettuce leaves! We oughta learn something here!


Thank you for your comments. They help me feel that I am some how connected out here in Blogland and not just writing to the air.


Related Posts with Thumbnails