Sunday, October 4, 2009

A Very Merry Chuseok!

Yesterday was Chuseok in Korea. Chuseok is an autumn harvest festival that is celebrated in some shape or form in many Asian countries. The date varies every year because it falls during the lunar calender, much like Chinese New Years (Seollal in Korea). In Korea it's a day for visiting family, making songpyeon (송편- a rice cake of sorts), bowing to grandparents and visiting ancestors' graves. Since I have no grandparents of my own to bow to, and my boyfriend is in Los Angeles on a buisness trip, I spent the holiday with some friends from my Korean class at my friend's house in Noksapyon.

We had a feast of food, taking full advantage of my friend's oven. Ovens are kind of a rarity for English teachers. After many arguments about the subject, I finally realized that many large, modern apartmetns DO have ovens, but most Koreans never even turn it on, it's practically just a decoration. Maybe on occassion they will barbeque something in there, but never use it for it's original purpose of baking. Anyway, since my friend does live in a fairly modern and fairly big apartment (three bedrooms is huge to me... but I suppose to an average, well off Korean it's probably just average size), he does have an oven. Two guys made the most glorious meatloaf I have ever tasted. I need to find that recipie and try to recreate it another time. I made some mashed potatoes, and my friend made Velveeta mac n cheese and chili mac. Finally for desert we had some Paris Baguette "cheesecake". I like Korean cheesecake, but I'm starting to forget what REAL cheesecake tates like... We ended the evening with a little bit of alcohol and watching crazy youtube videos on my friend's projector. All in all, it was a fabulous Chuseok.

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