'Indians Love Korean Food'

Cultural Diplomacy

Looking at the fast spreading Korean food fever, Korean Culture Centre in India (KCCI) organised ‘International Culinary Workshop’. The classes were hosted at Banarsidas Chandiwala Institute of Hotel Management and Catering Technology (BCIHMCT), New Delhi from June 29-July 31, 2016 by Korean cuisine expert ImChaehong. He is one of the chef lecturers in Jeonju University, Creative Culinary Institute of Korea. Participants enjoyed healthiest Korean food such as seaweed chips, kimchi stew, fried chicken, spicy stir–fried chicken, kimchi pan cake, glass noodles with sauteed vegetables and seafood, mung bean jelly with vegetables, persimmon rice cakes, gineng preserved in honey, cucumber kimchi, etc at KCCI. They learnt cooking Korean delicious food that has a special Kimchi twist (Kimchi is a patent Korean ingredient that is used in every Korean dish). The last session of the workshop had a special class with Master Chef Lim Chae Hong from Korean Food Grand Master Association, who taught students the essence of Korean cuisine.

Kim Kum Pyoung, Director/Counsellor, Korean Cultural Centre, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, speaks to the Diplomatist Trainee Associate Editor Anupriya Dobhal. Excerpts...

The Korean food workshop is a stepping stone towards building a bridge between both countries. Please elaborate on the workshop.

Yes, the love for Korean food has increased and taste is developing day by day. Many hotels and restaurants in India offer Korean food to their guests and the response is amazing. Somewhere or the other, the young buds or the youth can help you determine the love for any particular product or food. If the youth of any nation love your products, it is the symbol of your acceptance. We feel that Indians have very strong taste bud, and can learn food very fast. We organised this workshop so that students can understand the basic essence of Korean food, can learn and develop their taste. It is very important especially for hotel management students to understand the flavour of their guests. This food industry is very delicate, and largely depends on understanding the basics.

Do you think this workshop can generate opportunities for Indians in Korea?

Yes, definitely! We already have a flourishing bond between these two nations. Both countries have significant number of tourists visiting each year. We have great opportunities in hotel industry, cafés, at government offices. Besides this, we see many entrepreneurs coming up in this industry. During this workshop, our master chef had shared his recipe with some of the hotels. He trained the chefs on the food and the recipes have been included in their menus.

India and Korea share a similar bond culturally. So, is there any possibility of tie-ups between both nations in terms of cuisine or food industry?

Korean food already has its presence in Indian market. We have many food and beverages restaurants operating in India. Almost all the major hotel chains serve Korean food. We look forward to encourage Korean food even more in India.

Do you have other events lined up on similar lines promoting Korean culture or lifestyle in India?

Yes, KCC would also be playing a major role in our annual mega event – 15th CHANDIWALA HOSPITALITY ENSEMBLE 2016 to be held in September where 35 colleges from all over India take part in 13 different competitions over a period of 3 days. Besides this, we organise regular art exhibitions and participate at many events. We are also promoting our culture by running Korean language class, taekwondo class, storytelling class and other such activities.

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