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Korean Cuisine Featured at ASEAN-Korea Summit

Posted June. 02, 2009 07:36,   


Traditional Korean cuisine is the order of the day at the two-day ASEAN-Korea Commemorative Summit that began yesterday.

A welcoming dinner hosted by President Lee Myung-bak on the first day of the ASEAN-Korea Commemorative Summit featured traditional Korean cuisine. The leaders of the Southeast Asian countries will also have Korean food at their luncheon today.

First Lady Kim Yoon-ok, who is also the honorary chairwoman of a committee to “globalize Korean cuisine,” reportedly selected the menu personally.

The welcoming dinner featured traditional Korean royal cuisine and the luncheon will showcase fusion-style dishes. The leaders at the dinner made a toast with 12-year-old “Matchsoon,” a Japanese apricot-based wine, and ate dishes with the alcoholic beverage “Seolhwa,” of which 52 percent was from polished rice. They also drank the distilled liquor “heobeokju,” a specialty of Jeju Island, with dessert.

At their 2005 summit dinner, they had toasted with the slogan “A millennial promise.”

The basic course yesterday included water kimchi, mung bean gruel, abalone fresh from the island, sablefish, rib barbeque with fresh ginseng, and buckwheat tea. A seafood course was also offered with tofu steak and herbal salad instead of barbeque ribs. Sablefish was replaced with royal-style rice cake dishes for vegetarians.

Under the theme “Art of harmony,” today`s luncheon will pursue harmony and balance with assorted barbeque dishes as the main course served with parched bamboo sprouts, beef roasted with glutinous rice flour, vegetable kebabs covered in hot pepper paste, and noodle dishes traditionally served at feasts. The seafood course will comprise fried croakers and assorted seafood barbeque.

Leaders of Islamic nations where eating pork is taboo will get a halal course with barbeque lamb ribs as the main dish. The courses also include pear wine.

President Lee will personally roast kebabs on a coal stove at one corner of the banquet hall and serve them to the leaders.

His vice spokeswoman Kim Eun-hye said, “The luncheon features the theme of harmony and unity, and seeks to promote Korean food overseas while considering the tastes of each ASEAN nation.”