Vegetarian Korean? Why, yes!
As meat consumption by majority of Korean population is a fairly recent phenomena, it should not come as a surprise that there is a whole vegetarian culture waiting to be discovered. Influence of Buddhist cuisine adds an extra dimention to an already prevalent way of life.
Emergence and success of 'pure' vegetarian restaurants in Korea however, is fairly new, and surely a sign that Koreans are becoming more appreciative of healthy eating to be had in their own backyard. Everthing that is served in such establishments are part of daily life in Korean homes; only not in such diversity! The only way to really get to know such a cuisine is to visit a restaurant in Korea. You will come across a host of dried, pickled, as well as fresh seasonal and regional plants, in addition to more usual range vegetables, prepared to bring out full flavour of each leaf, root and stem; it makes a contrast with Chinese vegetarian cuisine which tends to empahsise imitation meat textures made from soy beans.
Whilst it is not possible to enjoy such diversity in Hong Kong, there is always a good selection to be had in better Korean restaurants, made from fresh and dried vegetables, sourced locally and from Korea, and prepared using uniquely Korean combination of seasonings and flavourings.
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