I recently came across this mandu and steamed bun hole-in-the wall whilst out roaming the streets near Hanti Station in Gangnam. The billowing clouds of steam and stacks of shiny aluminium steamers instantly grabbed my attention, and I resolved to get in on the action asap.
Working out of an open shop front, this two person operation was churning out food at a frightening pace. On the menu was two different types of regular sized mandu, a larger, bun sized mandu, and a steamed bun of epic proportions. I chose a portion of kimchi mandu (6 pcs, 3000 won) and one of the steamed buns (1pc, 1000.)
One of the great things about Korean street food are pochangmachas. Literally translated as “covered wagons,” these self contained tents are like mini outdoor restaurants, and are fantastic places to start or end a night of eating and drinking.
A good place to check out one of these is a street off Jongno near Jongno 3-ga Station. Here, dozens of pochangmachas line each side of the street, selling such delacies as octopus, skewered chicken hearts and shellfish – all served with plenty of sojo and beer of course!
Just had an article posted over on vendrTV about Penang, so please go check it out. If you don’t know it already vendrTV is a great street food podcast show that has just relaunched with a blog in tow. I’ve been watching the videos obsessively on my way to work and it’s worth having a look around.
Sweet potatoes are a big feature of Korean street food. They are used to make glass noodles for dishes such as japchae, and in winter they are often baked whole in little stoves. Another use for sweet potatoes is sweet potato chips. These are made by deep frying long thin “chips” of sweet potato until golden and crunchy.
Pajeon is my favourite Korean street food. While the pancake itself is great, the thing I love most about eating pajeon is the dipping sauce – a spicy salty mix of soy sauce, sesame seeds and chilli.
Most of the pajeon you get on the street in Korea contains octopus, but for this pajeon I’ve gone for some plump little prawns instead. The rest is mainly just spring onions, flour, water and eggs.
The WTF? Files: Investigations into the Unexplained will take a look at some of the quirkier aspects of Korean food. In my weekly post, I’ll be discussing important issues such as why apples lesbian porn are so big in Korea, or the fact that I am unable to find any decent cheese.