Sometimes, dining out can get a little tricky for the health conscious. Sure – food tastes good and look so appetising, but just how healthy is this yummy food we are feeding our bodies? Visitors to Korea are often awed by hansik 한식, the traditional Korean food centred around rice, with soup, side dishes and sometimes meat. If you are a fan of Korean food, you would realise that a proper meal involves quite a spread of dishes. Enter Hangaram 한가람, a locally owned restaurant that serves hansik with well-being ingredients specially sourced from the mountainous regions of Korea, with no added MSG or preservatives. Now we’re talking!
We visited this place on a Sunday, and managed to locate it easily owing to the many news and magazine articles displayed at its entrance (yes, it is quite popular amongst locals!) The interior was cosy and traditional, with a slight modern twist.
We were quickly seated and served with Hangaram‘s special water, which is actually brewed using lingzhi mushroom영지버섯, mountain hawthorn 산사 and red sage단삼. Apparently, this water is good for lowering cholesterol, building immunity and weight management. The taste was mild and we could feel the natural goodness entering our tummies! 😀
We then proceeded to order our food. We ordered four set menus to share (this came with rice, soup and side dishes or banchan 반찬). *side dishes are refillable.
Before we introduce you to them proper, here’s a snapshot of our meal table for 4 pax!
Are you hungry yet? 😀
- Barley Dried Yellow Corvina Set 보리굴비정식 (25,000W)
Yellow corvina is a type of fish that is native to the East Asian region. In Korea, these fishes are usually dried and salted, and then served as a delicacy. The fish was very appetizing, and a bowl of green tea was provided for us to dip the fish in before eating it, to reduce its saltiness.
2. Set Menu with Rice Cooked with Lotus Leaves 약선연밥정식 (10,000W)
This was a smaller set with steamed multi-grained glutinous rice in lotus leaves, topped with lotus roots, ginko nuts, red dates and assorted beans.
3. Set Menu with Seasoned Cirsium Bibimbap 곤드레나물밥정식 (7,000W)
Instead of the normal white rice served in many Asian restaurants, Hangaram serves seasoned cirsium rice (also known as Korean thistle). Korean thistle is a type of sanchae or mountain vegetable, that can only be found on mountains in Korea. It is low in fat and high in fibre, and considered a super food in Korea. The rice is also seasoned with perilla oil. This meal is served together with other mountain vegetables and a refillable bowl of seaweed soup or miyukguk 미역국.
4. Set Menu with Special Korean Style Ribs LA갈비구이정식 (22,000W)
What’s a complete Korean meal without some meat? We ordered a portion of Special Korean Style Ribs to complete our experience at Hangaram. The specially seasoned ribs are served on a generous portion of yellow bean sprouts or kongnamul 콩나물 , and garnished with leek and sesame seeds. Totally on point. 😀
It is true when people say that food does make a difference to our health. Our meal was immensely satisfying and we ate to our hearts’ content, but we felt strangely refreshed and recharged (definitely not the bloated feeling we usually get after feasting)!
For the quality and quantity of good food we got at Hangaram, we felt that every penny spent here was well worth it.
Address: 188-3, Euljiro 1-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Phone: +82 2-318-3088
*This is a non-sponsored post.