SEOUL, October 30, 2017 – The fourth annual Seoul Kimchi Festival is set to kick off its three-day run on November 3 at Seoul Plaza, an open-air public square in front of Seoul City Hall.
With a theme of “Day of Making Kimchi and Sharing Your Heart-felt Warmth,” the festival aims to promote the tradition of Korea’s history-long culture of Kimjang, or making kimchi (spicy fermented cabbage) as a communal practice of preparing food for the winter and sharing of kimchi among families, friends and communities. Kimjang has been recognized by the United Nation’s cultural agency, UNESCO, as a world heritage asset.
Here are some of the festival highlights:
As the signature event of the festival, Kimchi Nanum is expected to involve more than 4,500 participants, who will gather at Seoul Plaza and cook up a 120-ton feast of kimchi to donate to underprivileged neighbors. Especially for this year’s event, the Miral Welfare Foundation and several private enterprises offer ingredients, and many companies and groups sponsor the event so that the organizer is allowed to double the volume of making kimchi from that of last year.
As the most popular program last year, Seoul Kimjanggan is an event where participants are invited to try their hands at making kimchi for their families(“Our Family’s Kimjanggan”), watch kimchi-making demonstrations by kimchi masters (“Master’s Kimjanggan”) and learn special recipes of dishes using kimchi from professional chefs (“Chef’s Kimjanggan”). Also international residents and visitors can participate in the Foreigner’s Kimjanggan to learn how to make kimchi in English.
In particular, Korea’s representative kimchi masters including Kim Soonja, Yoo Jungim and Lee Hayeon will join the Seoul Kimjanggan program with their own pickled cabbages and ingredients to teach participants their secret recipes of making kimchi. Each participant is allowed to make five kg of kimchi and take it home. It is expected to be popular particularly to single-person households and families of two to four persons who have difficulties to find out a certain space to make kimchi and prepare all kinds of ingredients at home.
This playground prepares to provide a fun place especially to kids who will join the festival with their parents. They can enjoy jumping at a pot-shape zone, play and learn Kimjang with kimchi-related toys and creatures. “Kimchi on the body,” “The Great Escape” and other various performances on the theme of kimchi will also amuse the participants and visitors.
In line with the festival, kimchi from all across Korea is brought together at the kimchi market that will be opened on the street of Mugyo-ro. Kimchi Fusion Food Truck will offer diverse dishes made from kimchi. In addition, Youth Food Court, where visitors enjoy many different types of food all at one place, and Kimchi Pub will be run during the festival.
For more information on the event, please visit www.seoulkimchifestival.com.
An official from the Seoul Metropolitan Government said, “The Seoul Kimchi Festival will provide memory-stirring experiences to the older generation, while offering a unique opportunity to experience and learn Korea’s traditional culture to the younger generation as well as tourist.” He added, “We expand the meaning of Kimjang for this festival, and also prepare fun elements related to kimchi so that participants are allowed to enjoy together.