Korean Food : Fry, Drink, Eat, and Talk Samgyeopsal : Pork Belly



samgyeopsal

Fry, Drink, Eat Talk and Talk and Talk.

 At my early twenties

I used to dislike pork belly. Pork belly was notorious for its high fat contain and fattening people. I always struggled to be in a good shape as a prim girl. Pork belly was the enemy that tempted me to eat fatty foods and even drink.

When my friends called me out to have a drink. I knew that they must prefer to go to a pork restaurant. But I couldn’t curb us from it which is one of the cheap places to eat meat with reasonable price. (Even costly pork belly has a cheap version: mysterious food origin) And it’s good for poor students. Reluctant, but I went there all the time. Repeating, I always joined them. I liked its atmosphere turning meat over, chattering with friends, pouring soju into my friend’s glass. We Fry, Drink, Eat Talk and Talk and Talk. We were making pork-belly memories.


until now

I deter eating pork belly. I know more nutrition facts about pork belly, and as growing older, I more concern about my health. I no longer to eat unidentified food sold near school. I can afford to eat more valued and delicate dish on a fancy restaurant.

But guess what? My friends and I still go to pork restaurant to eat fatty food. We Fry, Drink, Eat Talk and Talk and Talk. We eat our past pork-belly memories.





What is Samgyeopsal(삼겹살)?

samgyeopsal

Samgyeopsal is Pork belly in Korea. Samgyeop(삼겹) means three layers and Sal(살) means flesh. It was name after three layered fat looking.

Other countries rarely fry pork belly itself without trimming. Koreans slice belly into 8~10mm of thickness and fry on a stone plate or a grill. Emphasizing its unique way of cooking, the government just designate it as Korean national food called Samgyeopsal.


 
Koreans Eat and Make Memories with Pork belly.

I suppose they seem enjoying their memories of eating pork belly. Pork belly, now expensive, used to be very cheap and people enjoy it with small budget. It has been represented out-dining food for years.

Now, people want to keep their out-dining experience with pork belly. Metaphorically, Koreans eat their past memories and make new ones with pork belly again.



Korean Food : What is Foreigner Favorite Korean Food?

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What is your favorite Korean food?

Bulgogi?
Gimbab?
Tteokbokki?
Samgyetang?
Hoddeok?
Naengmyeon?
Sundae?

Which korean food do you think foreigners like? It must be hard to choose one of them. There are umpteen sorts of food through the long history of Korea.
Interestingly, I found a research about favorite Korean food.





Foreigners’ Favorite Korean Food?

Pork belly was selected as a favorite food by research held by Seoul city government. It was processed through the city official homepage and facebook. 1,984 foreigners participated in the vote on ‘Delicious Food in Seoul’.; 952 from English spoken countries, 870 from Chinese, 162 from Japanese.

On this vote, Samgyeopsal(pork belly) was chosen no.1 by 558 people. It followed by Kimchi food with 332 votes, Tteokbokki(Spicy rice cake pasta) with 313 votes, Bibimbab with 231, Samgyetang with 172, Sogalbi(Beef rib) with 76, and Naengmyeon(Cold noodle) with 43. Needless to say, Pork belly was proved to be foreigner favorite food.

pork belly

Korean’s Favorite Meat?

Pork belly is not only foreigners’ favorite but also Koreans’. Researchers studied the sales by discount store. In 2011, Pork belly occupies almost half(45%) of the whole pork sale, Neck bone and picnic account for 15.6% and 14% each. Lastly Ham back up 7% of the pork market.

The dominance of pork belly lasted for 30 years. If you consider the diminish of belly sale due to high price after foot-and-mouth disease, Pork belly surely stands as a king part of pork.



What is Samgyeopsal(삼겹살)?

pork belly

Samgyeopsal is Pork belly in Korea. Samgyeop(삼겹) means three layers and Sal(살) means flesh. It was name after three layered fat looking.
 
Other countries rarely fry pork belly itself without trimming. Koreans slice belly into 8~10mm of thickness and fry on a stone plate or a grill. Emphasizing its unique way of cooking, the government just designate it as Korean national food called Samgyeopsal.


Why Pork Belly?

You must not understand the reason why Koreans are crazy for pork belly. Most countries price higher on pork loin or tenderloin than pork belly. Those parts contain less fat and more protein, so they’re regarded as more valued parts.

However, Koreans obviously prefer pork belly because of its fatty tastes. Everybody knows it’s not at all a healthy food, but they continue eating them often insisting belly tastes best among all parts.


What is March 3rd?

March 3rd is Samgyeopsal day only existing in Korea. Korean government determine to invigorate depressed livestock industry after foot-and-mouth disease. On that day, people enjoy eating out Samgyeopsal, and samgyeopsal restaurants hold various events to attract customers.

pork belly

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  1. Favicon of http://ilhongy.tistory.com BlogIcon 【洪】ILHONG 2012.02.22 08:00 신고  댓글주소  수정/삭제  댓글쓰기

    I didn't know such day exists. But I shouldn't be surprised. Thankfully, I have enough time to prepare and a lot of 쉰김치 to make the day even better. LoL.



Do Korean Eat Pig Skin?




Yes, we do eat Pig Skin. 


We call it 'dwae ji cup dae gi'  돼지 껍데기 in Korean.
'Dwae ji' means a pig and 'cup dae gi' means a cover or skin.
It literally means ' pig cover'.

 


Koreans say that Pig has no part to throw away.
we also eat pig meat(pork), pig intestines, blood, a liver, an ear, a foot and even a head. You must be shocked of the parts I mentioned above, but there exist several famous food using those body parts; Sundae(similar to sausage : intestines and blood), Jokbal(similar to german schweinshaxeI : feet) and et cetera. I will talk about those on following posts in detail.


        <Korean Charcoal Place>


Do you think eating pig skin is gross?

Haha. The answer is upto you. I used to feel pukey when I just heard of the name since it just reminded me of the filthy pigs in the pigpen. They also have some hairs on it. How can I dare to eat such un-sanitary things? That was the exactly the things coming up to me.


But thoughts change.

Few months ago, I was drawn to one restaurant that serve pork and the pigskin. I did not at all think of a hint of possibility to eat pig skin, because I have not eaten it yet and ever never will. But I could not stop my companies from ordering it, so I let it go. The uncooked pigskin is prepared and I feel yucky to see that pinkey-white thing.

Food is Food. This is Food. That was just only thing I soothed myself.

The pigskin was laid on the grill and started being cooked. It got oils down to underneath of grills and got brown color on it. Later, I noticed I feel like biting one piece. As you know, the fat-burning smell makes your mouth watering. But It was not easy to try. It was the moment my company knew my interests in pigskin and told me to try one. To my friends, I was a pigskin detester, so I hesitated to change my attitude toward it.
 



as one piece of pig skin popped out,  
My impulsive instinct popped out.

It was warm and hot, fatty, nutty, chewy and also crunchy. Fatty taste is the desirable flavor for humans, so I do not have to talk about how delicious fat is. When medium cooked, it is so super-chewy that it sometimes clings to your teeth, but enjoyable. When well cooked, it is rather crunchy with bubble surface, so it cracks when biting. It feels like eating chips or bisket.



How about Fat contain?

You might be afaid of fat contains in it. But you do not need to worry about it tha much. The grill pork skin is less fatty than your imagination. On the process of cooking, it loses most fat through oil drops beneath the grill. It means the fat melt away. It is an advantage of using grill in Korea. According to the new medias, the pigskin is rather protein than fat.
 
The researchers say that pig skin is high in Collagen that makes your skin smoother and elastic. It also helps adolescents growth. As a result, a number of korean women enjoy eating pig skin and parents give their children pigskin to make them taller.





Pig Skin Worldwide

At this point, I became wondering whether Korea is only country that eats pigskin. So, I just google it and found some interesting facts. There also exist several food varieties of pig skin around the world. Mr.Wiki explains it in detail.

Pork rind
Pork rind (known and invented in the United Kingdom as pork scratchings, as a room-temperature snack, or crackling, served hot as part of a meal, and in Australia and New Zealand as pork crackle/crackling), is the fried or roasted skin (rind) of a pig. Frying melts most of the fat from the pork rind.


United Kingdom & United States eat Pig SKin?

It was also surpiring to me that other cultures do comsume pigskin as food. They also cook the almost same way we do. Fry. So, I tried to figure out which countries have similar tastes with Korea.


United Kingdom
Pork crackling is the British name for the salted, crunchy, pork rind produced when roasting a joint of pork. The heat of the oven causes the fatty pork skin to dry, bubble up and become crunchy. The layer of fat underneath is retained, and can be eaten with the skin or removed. Some supermarkets now sell just the layer of skin and fat (no meat), in a raw form for home grilling or roasting, or cooked and ready to eat from hot food counters. Pork scratchings is the British name for deep-fried, salted, crunchy pork rind with fat produced separately from the meat. This is then eaten cold.


 United States
Pork rinds from the American company UtzCracklings is the American name for fried or roasted skins of pigs, geese or other animals. Pieces of fried meat, skin, or membrane produced as a byproduct of rendering lard are also called cracklings. Cracklings consist of either roasted or fried pork rind that has had salt rubbed into it and scored with a sharp knife: "a crackling offers a square of skin that cracks when you bite into it, giving way to a little pocket of hot fat and a salty layer of pork meat."




Now you are ready to try!

Enjoy tasty Pig Skin here in Korea!

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