So, let me tell you about the food in Korea. Keep in mind that we are living in a university and eat every meal in the school cafeteria. All meals pretty much look like this --------->
This particular meal was breakfast. Starting in the upper left corner and working clockwise we have - Kim Chee (phonetic spelling), a dish to mix with rice, dessert (in this case, tomato's), soup, spicy roots and rice. Kim Chee is served at every meal. It's essentially spicy cabbage. I'm not a fan.
The dish to mix with rice usually has a sauce, meat and vegetables. It's hit or miss with this one. Sometimes it's really spicy so I try to avoid that. Breakfast tends to be less spicy than the other meals.
The soup is usually my favorite. The broth is just water and the soup can have anything in it. Sometimes it is spicy, sometimes it's not. Sometimes there's meat, sometimes not. We have a theory that the soup contains whatever wasn't eaten from the day before. There's also a running joke: always dig to the bottom of the soup pot to find interesting treasures. One of our more interesting soups is pictured below.
She dug very deep in the soup pot and got this. That's right, folks. The pale sqwiggly things are intestine. There were also fish eggs, lung and another unidentified organ. She's such a trooper; she tried them all. Other interesting delictables include, but are not limited to: octopus, squid, unknown meat and unknown green plant stuff. Octopus and squid are pretty chewy and don't really have much flavor. I usually eat around them.
Food outside of the university is very very good. They have some American things (like french fries, crackers), awesome fruit dishes and a lot of noodles. They have these wonderful little dessert pastries. The pastry part is made from rice and has a texture similar to a wet Gusher (soft but chewy). The pastry is filled with sesame for sure and perhaps sugar also. The whole thing is about the size of a large marble. Yum!
Some shout-outs to American food include a Dunkin Donuts and Baskin Robbins (right outside of campus...about a 15 minute walk), burger fast food, a french bakery, a bar called "Western" and a bar called "Bucks - Milwaukee." I am proud to say that I have not been to any of these as I am trying to embrace the culture. We'll see how long that goes on for.
So the food is actually very good here. The only limiting factor is the language. My friends and I cannot just go out to eat because we really don't know how to order. Luckily, there is a Korean-English club (KEY club). The students in the club take us out and order for us for now. It's a great time.