Cooking at a hakgwan

The Korean language classes I signed up for includes two mandatory cultural outings. The first was to a taekwondo-inspired dance performance that was unfortunately lessened by seriously underdeveloped humour. Today, we went to a cooking hakgwan, which are learning centres where one can take classes on anything from computer programming to English. There we learned out to “make” bulgogi and bibimpap. I say make, but it was more like assemble, as most ingredients were already prepared for us in advance so there wasn’t much for us to do. I did learn though, that the secret to making bulgogi lies in the addition of grated Asian pear, and that bibimpap requires a special kind of sweet soy sauce and grape seed oil. Then again, the hakgwan that hosted us was owned by a food conglomerate so they may have just been product pushing…

Also, I learned that cooking hakgwans are popular among engaged women here, who typically sign up for classes prior to getting married to learn how to be prepare traditional dishes for their soon-to-be family.

Here are some pictures of our outing. It was fun to get to work in their kitchen, and oh how I coveted their full size convection ovens!


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