Let’s face it, one of the best parts of visiting a new country is trying all the amazing food! Seoul has ample choice, but ask anyone where you should eat bibimbap, and they’ll likely say Jeonju. What about black pork? Well, that’s the specialty of Jeju.
Busan, Korea’s second city, is home to the largest fish market in the country, hosts a number of fascinating markets and offers a dazzling host of uniquely, local cuisines.
If you’re a Korean foodie or planning a trip to Busan, make sure to try these local dishes to get a real taste of the city:
Dwaeji-gukbap is the type of dish that blows away the cobwebs on a cold Winters day. This heavenly pork and rice based soup, is conjured up from a creamy broth and served with a range of banchan (side dishes). Look for this in Seoul, and you may struggle, but head down to Busan, and everyone has had a taste of this mouth-watering meal.
Whilst locals warm up with dwaeji-gukbap in the Winter, Busanites turn to mil myeon for the Summer months. This zingy bowl of cold noodles packs a sweet yet spicy punch. Not to be confused with naeng-myeon, another cold noodle dish; mil-myeon is chewier but will still leave you feeling utterly refreshed during those hot, beach days.
Busan Eomuk (부산 어묵)
Head over to BIFF Square in Nampo-dong, and you’ll find yourself at the epicenter of Korean street food markets. One of the many snacks you can get your hands on, is eomuk; a delicious, rectangular shaped fishcake. This savoury bite was introduced to Korea during the Japanese occupation and became synonymous with Busan when the first major factory was opened in the city. Pick up an eomuk skewer from one of the many food stalls and dip it into the broth – it’s a great choice if you’re eating on the go!
Ssiat Hoddeok (씨앗호떡)
Have you got a sweet tooth? Look no further! This sweet, pancake-doughnut hybrid is filled to the brim with seeds, brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts to give it the perfect bit of crunch. BIFF Square has become renowned for this much-loved snack after Lee Seung-Gi was filmed eating it on ‘1 Night, 2 Days.’ The Korean variety show placed ssiat hoddeok on the map, so don’t be surprised if there’s a bit of a queue, it’s well worth waiting in line to get your hands on one!
Dongnae Pajeon (동래 파전)
Legend has it, this dish was presented to a great King many moons ago. Enriched in a deep history, Dongnae, a district in the north of the city, has cemented its legacy as the number one place to eat pajeon. This ‘Korean pancake’ is whisked together from a combo of eggs, green onions, scallions, glutinous and non-glutinous flour, as well as a choice of filling. If you’re looking for the most traditional pajeon experience, choose the seafood (haemul) option, pair it with a bowl of makgeolli (milky, rice wine) and indulge on a rainy day.