2013

The Year of the Snake

snake_lunaryear

The lunar New Year is around the corner! I hope that this post may inspire you to celebrate the lunar New Year Korean-style!

New Year’s and Korean thanksgiving are probably the two most important holidays in Korean culture. The dates of Korean New Year and Thanksgiving do not necessarily coincide with the “Western” dates of these holidays since Koreans typically mark these occasions according to the lunar calendar. Generally, New Year’s falls sometime in late January to late February by the solar calendar and lasts three days.

Both holidays are important because they are celebrated “en famille”. And just like the American Thanksgiving holiday, people will often return to their hometowns to mark this occasion. Some people may also wear the traditional hanbok on the New Year and/or Thanksgiving Day. There are many other customs that mark each of these holidays, and food is an important one.

Typically, breakfast on New Year or Seollal (in Korean) is the tteokguk: a hearty broth filled with rice cake. The Tteokguk is full of symbolic meaning. Koreans calculate their age in reference to New Year rather than their actual birthday. So eating a bowl of tteokguk means becoming one year older. It is advised, no matter how good the soup is, to refrain from having more than one bowl! You may not be gaining more wisdom with more soup! This may be a difficult exercise. Not only because of the tastiness of the soup, but also because having tteokguk is supposed to grant good luck for the forthcoming year. Tteok is white, so there’s a symbolic element of purity and cleanliness attached to eating tteok to start off the New Year afresh.

Below are some links including some to tteokguk recipes if you’re looking for some more luck for the New Year! Happy New Year!

http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_6.jsp?cid=941952
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_New_Year
http://koreanfood.about.com/od/holidaysandoccasions/a/NewYear_2.htm
http://aeriskitchen.com/2009/01/korean-lunar-new-year-soup-%EB%96%A1%EA%B5%ADtteokguk/
http://blogs.transparent.com/korean/new-years-food/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tteokguk

Recipes:
http://www.maangchi.com/recipe/ddukguk
http://www.koreanbapsang.com/2010/01/tteokguk-rice-cake-soup-ddeokgukddukguk.html
http://www.asiafoodrecipe.com/recipe/tteokguk-rice-cake-soup/

4 replies »

  1. It is challenging to come across knowledgeable people on this subject, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    [url=http://coolchristianlouboutina.2kool4u.net]christian louboutin sale shoes[/url]

  2. I just like the helpful information you provide on your articles. I will bookmark your blog and test once more here frequently. I’m moderately certain I will learn many new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next! ebagfakebk

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s